SAN DIEGO -- People around the world will gather Thursday to recognize World AIDS Day and help raise awareness about the disease.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the global HIV epidemic claimed fewer lives in 2015 than at any point in almost 20 years. They cite prevention programs that have reduced the number of new HIV infections and a massive expansion of antiretroviral therapy that has reduced the number of people dying of HIV-related causes.
- In 2015, 1.1 (940 000–1.3 million) million people died from HIV-related causes globally.
- There were approximately 36.7 (34.0–39.8) million people living with HIV at the end of 2015 with 2.1 (1.8–2.4) million people becoming newly infected with HIV in 2015 globally.
- Sub-Saharan Africa is the most affected region, with 25.6 (23.1–28.5) million people living with HIV in 2015. Also sub-Saharan Africa accounts for two-thirds of the global total of new HIV infections.
- HIV infection is often diagnosed through rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs), which detect the presence or absence of HIV antibodies. Most often these tests provide same-day test results; essential for same day diagnosis and early treatment and care.
- There is no cure for HIV infection. However, effective antiretroviral (ARV) drugs can control the virus and help prevent transmission so that people with HIV, and those at substantial risk, can enjoy healthy, long and productive lives.
- It is estimated that currently only 60% of people with HIV know their status. The remaining 40% or over 14 million people need to access HIV testing services. By mid-2016, 18.2 (16.1–19.0) million people living with HIV were receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART) globally.
- Between 2000 and 2015, new HIV infections fell by 35%, AIDS-related deaths fell by 28% with some 8 million lives saved. This achievement was the result of great efforts by national HIV programs supported by civil society and a range of development partners.
- Expanding ART to all people living with HIV and expanding prevention choices can help avert 21 million AIDS-related deaths and 28 million new infections by 2030.
— CDC HIV/AIDS (@CDC_HIVAIDS) November 30, 2016