Number of people with HIV unchanged since 2012 - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Number of people with HIV unchanged since 2012

Posted: Updated:
By MARIA CHENG
AP Medical Writer

LONDON (AP) - The number of people living with HIV worldwide has remained virtually unchanged in the past two years and AIDS-related deaths are at their lowest since peaking almost a decade ago, according to a report from the United Nations AIDS agency released Wednesday.

Officials declared that ending the AIDS epidemic is possible even though they acknowledged the number of new infections - more than 2 million last year - was still very high. UNAIDS estimated there were about 35 million people living with HIV last year and in 2012.

The agency also set targets to reduce deaths and new cases by 90 percent by 2030. It previously unveiled a strategy to get to "zero AIDS-related deaths," which included ensuring all people who need treatment are on it by 2015.

Last year, there were about 12.9 million people receiving life-saving drugs and 22 million people still waiting. Some 1.5 million people died from AIDS-related causes.

Other health experts questioned whether setting more ambitious targets is wise.

"This idea of ending AIDS isn't realistic," said Sophie Harman, a senior lecturer in public health at Queen Mary University of London, who was not part of the report. She said it would be more helpful to think about managing the epidemic. "Everyone can get behind ending AIDS, but this report doesn't really tell us how to do that."

Still, UNAIDS insisted in its report that we are at the "beginning of the end of the AIDS epidemic" and said the global outbreak can be stopped by 2030.

But with no vaccine and millions of people carrying the virus or becoming newly infected, some scientists said ending HIV may be idealistic rather than practical.

"We've made progress, but the number of people getting infected is still extraordinarily high," said Shabbar Jaffar, a professor of epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He said that scaling up treatment further, especially in Africa, where about 70 percent of people with HIV live, would be very difficult. "They are already working beyond capacity at the moment."

Jaffar said it was misleading to suggest we are close to eliminating AIDS.

"The road will get longer and harder and we really don't know where we're going to end up," he said.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • U.S. & World NewsMore>>

  • Pipe break that flooded UCLA dumps 20M gallons

    Pipe break that flooded UCLA dumps 20M gallons

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:19 PM EDT2014-07-30 23:19:35 GMT
    The quiet summer campus of UCLA found itself suddenly steeped in water and chaos after a major water pipe burst and spewed some eight million gallons, stranding people in parking garages and flooding the...
    Authorities say a pipe break that flooded UCLA's famed Pauley Pavilion has now released 20 million gallons of water and continues to gush.
  • ESPN suspends Smith for comments on abuse

    ESPN suspends Smith for comments on abuse

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:16 PM EDT2014-07-30 23:16:54 GMT
    ESPN says it has suspended sportscaster Stephen A. Smith for a week because of comments about domestic abuse suggesting women should make sure they don't provoke attacks.
    ESPN has suspended outspoken sportscaster Stephen A. Smith for a week because of his comments about domestic abuse suggesting women should make sure that they don't do anything to provoke an attack.
  • Japanese search US archives for WWII MIA info

    Japanese search US archives for WWII MIA info

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:08 PM EDT2014-07-30 23:08:53 GMT
    Racing against time, members of a Japanese organization are combing a New York military museum's World War II records for information they hope will lead to the graves of American servicemen still listed as...
    A Japanese group is combing a New York military museum's World War II records for information it hopes will lead to the graves of Americans still listed as missing in action on the Pacific island of Saipan.
Powered by WorldNow
General information or questions:
kxinfo@kxnet.com

News:
Bismarck:
Phone: 701-223-9197
News Fax: 701-223-1985

News:
Minot:
Phone: 701-852-2104
News Fax: 701-838-1050
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KXNET. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.