Anti-HIV/AIDS moves with funding shortfall for epidemic treatment

15:18, July 20, 2010      

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The 18th International AIDS Conference opened in Vienna, Austria on Sunday to UN pleas and activists' clamor for countries not to backtrack in the 29-year war on acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). The six-day forum has drawn more than 200,000 people worldwide, including scientists, governmental representatives, medical officers and personages from business circles.

The glad tidings derived from the ongoing AIDS Conference is that the number of people receiving life-saving HIV treatment has soared by more than 1 million to 5.2 million by late 2009, marking the largest jump ever, but Anti-AIDS workers are worried about a multibillion dollar funding shortfall for the AIDS treatment.

As of December 2008, per the UNAIDS, 33.4 million people were infected with the HIV virus around the globe, … about 2.7 million persons were newly infected in 2008, 18 percent and 30 percent respectively … At the same time, there were approximately 2 million HIV/AIDS-related deaths in 2008. The HIV epidemic could balloon to 35 billion US dollars (22.9 billion British pounds) by the year 2030 if governments fail, according to a KFF/UNAIDS report issued on July 17.

Since the start of the epidemic, the HIV/AIDS has created public health hazards…. The rise of costs and donor retreat on HIV will undermine or further negatively affect the HIV treatment in sub-Sahara Africa.

Lower- and middle-income economies needed 23. 6 billion US dollars from all source for fighting AIDS in 2009, said the report of the UNAIDS, and the shortfall in funding last year was 7.7 billion dollars. For 2010, 25 billion dollars has to be mustered for fighting AIDS in poorer countries, according to a previous UNAIDS estimate. So far, there is a funding shortfall of 11.3 billion dollars, according to an analysis published last week in the US journal Science.

The HIV/AIDS needs to be treated like any other disease with regard to treatment. An executive board member of the UNAIDS, however, acknowledged that it is very difficult for developing nations to get the funding for the HIV/AIDS treatment.

There were 5.2 million people on AIDS drugs in late 2009, and the number of people taking crucial AIDS drug climbed by a record 1.2 million last year to 5.2 million overall, the World Health Organization (WTO) said.

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