Tuesday August 20, 2019

UNAIDS: 16 Per Cent Decline in HIV Cases Since 2010, Driven Mostly by Steady Progress

The report also revealed that AIDS-related deaths continued to decline as access to treatment continues

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UNAIDS, HIV, Progress
UNAIDS' Global AIDS Update showed that South Africa, for example, has made huge advances and has successfully reduced new HIV infections by more than 40 per cent and AIDS-related deaths by around 40 per cent. Pixabay

The UNAIDS in its latest report issued on Tuesday said that globally, around 1.7 million people became newly infected with HIV in 2018, a 16 per cent decline since 2010, driven mostly by steady progress across most of eastern and southern Africa.

UNAIDS’ Global AIDS Update showed that South Africa, for example, has made huge advances and has successfully reduced new HIV infections by more than 40 per cent and AIDS-related deaths by around 40 per cent since 2010.

The report also revealed that AIDS-related deaths continued to decline as access to treatment continues to expand and more progress is made in improving the delivery of HIV/tuberculosis services.

Since 2010, AIDS-related deaths have fallen by 33%, to 770 000 in 2018.

UNAIDS, HIV, Progress
The UNAIDS in its latest report issued on Tuesday said that globally, around 1.7 million people became newly infected with HIV in 2018. Pixabay

However, there was still a long way to go in eastern and southern Africa, the region most affected by HIV, and there have been worrying increases in new infections in eastern Europe and central Asia (29 per cent), in the Middle East and North Africa (10 per cent) and in Latin America (7 per cent).

The report also said that key populations and their sexual partners now account for more than half (54 per cent) of new HIV infections globally.

In 2018, key populations, including people who inject drugs, gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender people, sex workers and prisoners, accounted for around 95 per cent of new HIV infections in eastern Europe and central Asia and in the Middle East and North Africa.

However, the report showed that less than 50 per cent of key populations were reached with combination HIV prevention services in more than half of the countries that reported.

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This highlighted that key populations were still being marginalized and being left behind in the response to HIV.

“We urgently need increased political leadership to end AIDS,” the report quoted Gunilla Carlsson, UNAIDS Executive Director, as saying,

“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.” (IANS)

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People Living with HIV Significantly Elevates Risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

They found that people living with HIV are at an increased risk of contracting specific diseases and illnesses

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HIV, COPD, Disease
For the study, published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, researchers combined data from 20 separate observational studies and examined 55 different illnesses. Pixabay

People living with HIV have a significantly elevated risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and coughs, heart disease, pregnancy mortality and sepsis, anemia and bone fractures, according to a study.

For the study, published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, researchers combined data from 20 separate observational studies and examined 55 different illnesses.

They found that people living with HIV are at an increased risk of contracting specific diseases and illnesses, some of which are more commonly associated with ageing.

“By pooling data from different studies, we have been able to show for the first time that even with the rise in life expectancy amongst people living with HIV, this population now seems to be disproportionately affected by chronic illnesses often attributable to lifestyle issues such as smoking, drug and alcohol use or more commonly associated with an older population,” said study researcher Lee Smith from Anglia Ruskin University in the UK.

HIV, COPD, Disease
People living with HIV have a significantly elevated risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and coughs, heart disease, pregnancy mortality and sepsis, anemia and bone fractures. Pixabay

Although the number of people contracting HIV is declining, approximately 1.8 million people are infected every year and HIV remains one of the world’s major health issues.

In recent years, people with HIV have benefited from improved access to antiretroviral treatment. However, increased life expectancy and a lower immunity has meant higher levels of comorbidity, with people living with HIV also more likely to suffer from other illnesses.

The greater prevalence of age-associated diseases may be explained by the persistent immunodeficiency and inflammation connected with HIV. There are also adverse effects associated with antiretroviral treatment.

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Previous studies have also suggested that people with HIV in developed countries, as a population, often exhibit greater risk factors associated with non-AIDS related illnesses, such as smoking, drug use and alcohol use. (IANS)