Promising UNAIDS report finds HIV infections have dropped 50 percent in 25 countries
"The pace of progress is quickening - what used to take a decade is now being achieved in 24 months," Michel Sidibe, UNAIDS Executive Director, told the news source. "We are scaling up faster and smarter than ever before. It is the proof that with political will and follow-through we can reach our shared goals by 2015," he added in a press release.
According to CNN.com, the goals that Sidibe refer to are known as the Millennium Development Goals, which were put in place in 2000 and include reducing child mortality and eliminating poverty and extreme hunger. However, it was the organization's role in decreasing HIV/AIDS rates in impoverished countries that looks to be one of UNAIDS' biggest success stories.
In addition to lowering HIV/AIDS rates worldwide, a significant improvement has been seen in infection rates among children. Amazingly, over the past 24 months, the number of children who have been newly infected with the HIV virus has dropped by 40 percent in six countries.
Additionally, the report illustrated marked improvements in many countries that had the worst contraction rates for the sexually transmitted disease. For instance, Malawi has seen a 73-percent drop in HIV rates, while Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe have all reported a more than 50-percent drop in HIV cases. This is a remarkable turn of events for countries that have seen so much hardship over the past several decades.
The report is also very significant in light of World AIDS Day, which takes place on December 1 and will feature a number of international fundraisers, awareness campaigns and other large-scale events meant to bring attention to the HIV/AIDS cause. Thanks to these promising statistics, AIDS advocates can now imagine a day when the disease is eradicated completely.