More Than Half Of People Living With HIV Taking Medication, AIDS-Related Deaths Nearly Cut In Half Since 2005, UNAIDS Report Shows

Associated Press: For 1st time, over half of people with HIV taking AIDS drugs
“For the first time in the global AIDS epidemic that has spanned four decades and killed 35 million people, more than half of all those infected with HIV are on drugs to treat the virus, the United Nations said in a report released Thursday. AIDS deaths are also now close to half of what they were in 2005, according to the U.N. AIDS agency, although those figures are based on estimates and not actual counts from countries…” (Cheng, 7/20).

BBC News: AIDS deaths halve as more get drugs
“…A report by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) showed deaths had fallen from a peak of 1.9 million in 2005 to one million last year. … Worldwide, 36.7 million are living with HIV and 53 percent of them are getting the therapy that [has the potential to provide] a near-normal life expectancy…” (Gallagher, 7/20).

The Economist: Some good news and some bad, in the fight against HIV
“…Less happily, the rate of new infections, though dropping, is not doing so as fast as UNAIDS and its allies had hoped. In 2016 1.8m people became infected. That is down from a peak of 3.2m in 1997, but has declined by only 16 percent since 2010. On present trends, the official U.N. target of reducing the figure to 500,000 a year by 2020 looks hopelessly optimistic…” (7/20).

Reuters: Scales tip in AIDS fight as death rates decline, treatment rates rise
“…The report warned, however, that not all regions are making progress. In the Middle East and North Africa, and in eastern Europe and central Asia, AIDS-related deaths have risen by 48 percent and 38 percent respectively, it said, mostly due to HIV-positive patients not getting access to treatment…” (Kelland, 7/20).

ScienceInsider: For first time in history, half of all people with HIV are getting treatment
“…As the report emphasizes, ‘substantial progress’ has been made toward 90-90-90. Based on 168 countries reporting data, the overall bottom line for the world was 70-77-82 in 2016. Seven countries have hit the 90-90-90 target, and 11 others are close. ‘Remarkable progress,’ in the report’s words. But it does not sugarcoat the situation. ‘Within this clear-cut picture of progress lurk troubling barriers to success’…” (Cohen, 7/20).

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