August 20, 2019
Latest News

UN warns world fight against AIDS slowing down

By Nerea González

Johannesburg, Jul 16 (efe-epa).- The United Nations has warned Tuesday that progress in the fight against AIDS is slowing down.

It said that since 2010 there have been “worrying increases” in HIV infections in areas of eastern Europe, central Asia, the Middle East and Latin America.

There are currently 37.9 million infected people in the world and only two out of three have access to antiretrovirals, according to the latest global annual report that the Joint United Nations Program on HIV /AIDS (UNAIDS) presented on Tuesday in South Africa.

The UN program focused on the increase in infections that have been registered since 2010 in eastern Europe and central Asia (29%), the Middle East and North Africa (10%), and Latin America (7%).

According to UNAIDS, the global reduction of infections and related deaths was especially driven by the efforts in South and East Africa, although these regions are still the most affected in the world.

The UN estimated that in 2018 some 1.7 million people contracted the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and some 770,000 died from related AIDS illnesses.

The number of new infections in 2018 represents a drop of 16% compared to the rates of 2010.

In the same period, deaths linked to AIDS fell by 33% and 82% of pregnant women who have the virus received treatment (90% more than in 2010), which means a 41% reduction in the rate of infected children.

However, the UN stressed in its report that "progress being made, but less each year" and urged not to lower the guard.

The deceleration puts at risk the main goals set by the UN for 2020, called "90-90-90", which at this rate will not be achieved.

These goals aim that 90% of people with HIV will be aware of their health status by 2020, that 90% of those diagnosed receive continuous antiretroviral therapy and that 90% of people who receive antiretroviral therapy have viral suppression (which significantly reduces the presence of the virus in the blood).

By region, the general outlook regarding the fight against HIV is heterogeneous.

Countries such as South Africa - one which was historically most hit by AIDS - have managed to reduce new infections and deaths by 40% in the last eight years.

For this reason, UNAIDS chose the small South African community of Eshowe, in the east of the country, to launch its 2019 global report.

The UN program considers this place an "example" as it has already reached the goals set for 2020.

"We urgently need increased political leadership to end AIDS," said Gunilla Carlsson, UNAIDS Executive Director.

"This starts with investing adequately and smartly and by looking at what's making some countries so successful.

"Ending AIDS is possible if we focus on people, not diseases, create road maps for the people and locations being left behind, and take a human rights-based approach to reach people most affected by HIV," Carlsson said.

The UN experts also lamented the fall in financing during 2018.

"Disconcertingly, the report shows that the gap between resource needs and resource availability is widening.

"For the first time, the global resources available for the AIDS response dropped significantly, by nearly US$1 billion, as donors disbursed less and domestic investments did not grow fast enough to compensate for inflation," UNAIDS said in the report.

Regarding the general knowledge about seropositivity, almost eight out of 10 people with HIV in the world are already aware of it.

The UN report emphasized the importance of communities stopping the advance of the virus, for their key role in issues such as education, access to prevention and also for the need to fight against social stigmas.

Within their communities, young women continue to be particularly vulnerable.

The UN said that it is “unacceptable" that nearly 6,200 young women were infected with the virus in 2018 and that they are 60% more likely to contract it than their male counterparts. EFE-EPA


News history
El Salvador woman pardoned after manslaughter conviction for abortion

Ciudad Delgado, El Salvador, Aug 19 (efe-epa).- A court in El Salvador pardoned Evelyn Hernandez, 21, this Monday of the crime of aggravated manslaughter...

Bardem: If 30 pct. of oceans not protected in 2030, damage to be irreversible

By Alvaro Celorio

DNA extracted from turtle shell products in drive to save species

Sydney, Australia, Aug 18 (efe-epa).- Scientists have extracted DNA from products made out of hawksbill turtle shells in a bid to save a species that is...

FAO: 39 million people suffer from hunger in Latin America

Montevideo, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- An increase in the number of people suffering from hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean, now totaling 39 million, is a...

European Commission president cuts Austria vacation short for urgent surgery

Brussels, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- The president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, has had to cut his vacation in Austria short for medical...

Death toll in dengue outbreak hits 40 in Bangladesh

Dhaka, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- At least 40 people have died from dengue in Bangladesh, with over 50,000 cases reported throughout the country since January,...

Dirt-floor shacks a perpetual symbol of Argentina's gaping social divide

By Tono Gil

UNICEF: Rohingya child refugees despair over lack of access to education

Dhaka, Aug 16 (efe-epa) - Lack of access to formal education is leading to frustration and despair among young Rohingya refugees in southeastern Bangladesh,...

Pacific Islands Forum ends with lukewarm declaration against climate change

Sydney, Australia, Aug 16 (efe-epa).- The Pacific Islands Forum ended on Thursday night in Funafuti, the capital of island nation Tuvalu, without a...

Salvadoran woman hopeful of acquittal in retrial for stillbirth

Ciudad Delgado, El Salvador, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- A Salvadoran woman sentenced to 30 years in prison after a stillborn delivery was back in court here...

Scientists detect microplastic particles in the snow

Berlin, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- A team of German and Swiss scientists have detected the presence of microplastic particles in the snow of the Arctic and the Alps...

Nora Quoirin died of internal bleeding from stress or lack of food: police

Bangkok Desk, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- The London schoolgirl found dead in a Malaysian jungle two days ago died from internal bleeding likely caused by lack of...

Pell's appeal against child sexual abuse convictions to be decided on Aug. 21

Sydney, Australia, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- An Australian cardinal convicted to six years in prison for abusing two boys in the 1990s will find out the fate of...

Pell's appeal against child sexual abuse convictions to be decided on Aug. 21

Sydney, Australia, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- An Australian cardinal convicted to six years in prison for abusing two boys in the 1990s will find out the fate of...

More than 250 lawsuits vs. Catholic Church filed over sex abuse in New York

New York, Aug 14 (efe-epa).- A New York law office on Wednesday filed more than 250 lawsuits over sexual abuse of minors against the Catholic Church with...

Brazilian women challenge Bolsonaro with massive protest

Eduardo Davis

Antarctic Commission studies creation of large marine protected areas

By Daniela Brik.

Indigenous and farm women demand gender equality in Brazil

Brasilia, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- Groups of indigenous and farm women were received this Tuesday by the Brazilian legislature, where both repeated their...

Australia pledges funds to fight climate change's effects on Pacific nations

Sydney, Australia, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- The Australian government on Tuesday announced the creation of a fund to finance projects that will help Pacific...

Australia announces investment in recycling to avoid exporting waste

Sydney, Australia, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- The Australian government on Tuesday announced a plan to encourage the recycling of plastic waste following...

Expansion of quay on Mexican island of Cozumel worries environmentalists

By Ricardo Hernandez

Reward offered in search for teenage girl missing in Malaysia

Bangkok, Aug 12 (efe-epa).- The parents of a 15-year-old girl who went missing in a jungle region in Malaysia have offered a reward for information on where...

Singapore bans ivory trade after seizing 9 tonnes of elephant tusks

Bangkok Desk, Aug 12 (efe-epa).- Singapore authorities on Monday announced a total ban on the domestic trade in ivory, weeks after seizing almost nine...

Ebola as seen through the eyes of children in DR Congo

By Patricia Martínez

I agree Welcome to We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.