UN sees significant progress in expanding access to HIV/Aids treatment

Source: Xinhua| 2019-11-27 00:24:58|Editor: ZX
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NAIROBI, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- Significant progress has been made particularly in expanding access to HIV/AIDS treatment across the world, a new report from the United Nations Programme on HIV and Aids (UNAIDS) released in Kenya on Tuesday shows.

The report notes that as of mid 2019, an estimated 24.5 million of the 37.9 million people living with HIV were accessing treatment. "As treatment roll-out continues, fewer people are dying of AIDS-related illnesses," says the report that was launched in Nairobi.

"In many parts of the world, significant progress has been made in reducing new HIV infections, reducing AIDS-related deaths and reducing discrimination, especially in eastern and southern Africa," Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of UNAIDS said during the launch of the report, attributing the progress made to solidarity of women, young people, gay men, sex workers, people who use drugs and transgender people.

The UN official noted that by empowering this group of people, the world will end the epidemic since it leads to the transformation of character.

Byanyima, however, said that despite the progress, social injustices, inequality, denial of citizenship rights, stigma and discrimination are holding back progress against HIV and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The report reveals that new HIV infections declined by 28 percent from 2010 to 2018 in eastern and southern Africa, the region that is most affected by HIV.

In a promising sign, the incidence rate of HIV among adolescent girls and young women aged between 15 and 24 years in the region declined from 0.8 percent in 2010 to 0.5 percent in 2018, a 42 percent decline.

However, it states that young women and girls still bear the brunt of new HIV infections, where four out of five new HIV infections among adolescents in Sub-Saharan Africa are girls.