World Behind On Pledge To Reduce HIV/AIDS Infections, Improve Treatment, U.N. Report Says

“The world is falling behind in its pledge to reduce HIV/AIDS infections and improve treatment, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, according to a U.N. report [.pdf] released Monday” by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the Associated Press reports. The report to the U.N. General Assembly “said that ‘critical challenges remain’ if the world is to make good on promises made at a U.N.-sponsored meeting on HIV/AIDS in June 2011,” the AP writes (Alt Powell, 4/30). “Among the targets set by the international community at the June 2011 high-level meeting are the elimination of new HIV/AIDS infections in children, cutting sexually transmitted infections by 50 percent, and delivering antiretroviral therapy to 15 million people,” Xinhua/China Daily notes (5/1).

“Funding for anti-HIV/AIDS projects has been inadequate, the report said, and a U.N. goal to halt and reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS by 2015 may not be met,” according to the AP. The report “said that some $15 billion was available to respond to the HIV pandemic in 2010, but it estimated that $22 billion to $24 billion will be needed by 2015 to achieve the U.N.’s HIV/AIDS targets,” the news service notes (4/30). In the report, Ban “gave recommendations to the international community for combating the scourge of HIV/AIDS, including the establishment of new partnerships and a new approach for HIV investment,” China Daily writes (5/1). According to GlobalPost, the “report also highlights a number of positive achievements, including about 2.5 million deaths that have been averted since 1995 due to an increase in antiretroviral therapy” (Besant, 4/30).