December 1st is World AIDS Day, a global day devoted to raising awareness of the disease, which affects millions around the world, and this is a day on which we pay our respects to those that have died from this dreadful HIV/AIDS virus.
It’s been more than 30 years since AIDS became a part of the world awareness. This day, December 1, 2012, there is cause to celebrate, because progress is being made toward an AIDS-free generation. According to a new UN report, the rate of new HIV infections has dropped by more than 50% reduction in the rate of new HIV infections has been achieved across 25 low- and middle-income countries––more than half in Africa, the region most affected by HIV.
World AIDS Day has a new mission: “Getting to Zero” by 2015. This means that by year 2015 the world have ZERO new HIV infections, ZERO discrimination and ZERO AIDS-related deaths.
Facts about HIV/AIDSSource: UNAIDS.ORG
What is HIV?
HIV stands for 'human immunodeficiency virus'. HIV is a virus (of the type called retrovirus) that infects cells of the human immune system, and destroys or impairs their function.
What is AIDS?
AIDS stands for 'acquired immunodeficiency syndrome' and is a surveillance definition based on signs, symptoms, infections, and cancers associated with the deficiency of the immune system that stems from infection with HIV.
What are the symptoms of HIV?
Most people infected with HIV do not know that they have become infected, because they do not feel ill immediately after infection. However, some people at the time of seroconversion develop “Acute retroviral syndrome” which is a glandular fever-like illness with fever, rash, joint pains and enlarged lymph nodes.
Seroconversion refers to the development of antibodies to HIV and usually takes place
between 1 and 6 weeks after HIV infection has happened.
What is antiretroviral therapy?
Standard antiretroviral therapy (ART) consists of the combination of at least three antiretroviral (ARV) drugs to maximally suppress the HIV virus and stop the progression of HIV disease.
New HIV infections
Worldwide, 2.5 million [2.2 million–2.8 million] people became newly infected with HIV in 2011.
25 countries have seen a 50% or greater drop in new HIV infections since 2001.
However progress is uneven. Since 2001, the number of people newly infected in the Middle East and North Africa increased by more than 35%. In Eastern Europe and Central Asia, there has also been an increase in new HIV infections in recent years.
1,000 babies are still born with HIV every day, and 63 percent of all young people living with HIV are young women
In 2011, 1.7 million [1.5 million–1.9 million] people died from AIDS-related causes worldwide—24% fewer deaths than in 2005.
In 2011, more than 8 million people living with HIV had access to antiretroviral therapy.
People living with HIV
In 2011, there were 34 million [31.4 million–35.9 million] people living with HIV.
Social Media Campaigns for World AIDS DayTake a look at these inspiring campaigns from Red, One and Durex FOR World AIDS Day.
Contraceptive giant Durex plans to donate one condom for each social share of its #1Share1Condom campaign.