PAHO urges testing as first step towards halting the AIDS epidemic

PAHO urges testing as first step towards halting the AIDS epidemic

This means 76 adolescent deaths every day, unless we make additional investment in HIV prevention, testing and treatment programmes in a number of regions. Ukraine keeps the leading position in Europe in terms of new HIV infection cases. It has also pledged to enable 90% of HIV positive people in the country know their status on treatment and provide 90% of those on treatment experience with effective viral load suppression. In 2017, 9.4 million people were simply unaware that they are living with a potentially deadly, but treatable, disease.

"The Region of the Americas has made important progress in the fight against AIDS and part of this is down to the fact that over three-quarters of people living with HIV have been tested and nearly 80 percent of them are now in treatment", said Dr. Marcos Espinal, Director of the PAHO/WHO Department of Communicable Diseases and Environmental Determinants of Health.

According to her, 70 million people had been infected of HIV, and 35 million have died of the infection since discovery in 1983. This has resulted in reducing child mortality by 20% and reducing the rate of new infections by 44%. We must tackle stigma and discrimination, and we must address the needs of the most vulnerable: adolescent girls, for example.

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He says many social ills begin in the home, where women are often treated with disrespect. More people living with HIV are now receiving treatment that is allowing them to live longer, healthier lives.

"The good news is that for those who are HIV positive, the government has enough drugs and plans in place to support and treat the affected for free". During the intervening decades, HIV testing services became widely available - routinely through clinical settings and to higher-risk populations through community-based approaches.

She stated that one out of four persons infected with HIV might not know for about two - four years. World Health Organization first recommended HIV self-testing in December 2016. Founded in 1988, World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day. However, it is also an important reminder that despite progress made, the world can not become complacent in its response to HIV.

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