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Two million people with HIV started treatment in 2015
Keith Alcorn, 2016-05-31 17:20:00
At least two million people worldwide started antiretroviral
treatment in 2015 alone, and 17 million people are now taking antiretroviral
therapy, up by a third since 2013, UNAIDS announced on Tuesday.
The announcement comes ahead of the United Nations General Assembly High-Level
Meeting on Ending AIDS, to take place in New York from 8 to 10 June 2016. The
High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS is intended to catalyse support for a commitment
to achieve ambitious treatment targets – the Fast-Track approach. The Fast-Track approach seeks to accelerate the scale-up of treatment and prevention dramatically by 2020, so that:
- 90% of people living with HIV are diagnosed by 2020
- 90% of diagnosed people are on antiretroviral treatment by 2020
- 90% of people on treatment have fully suppressed viral load by 2020.
As well as endorsing
targets to reduce both infections and AIDS-related deaths to less than 500,000
per year, and to eliminate HIV-related discrimination, the draft declaration
also seeks to win a commitment to increase funding for the HIV response from
$19 billion a year to $26 billion a year by 2020.
report shows that the number of people receiving treatment has more than
doubled in every region of the world apart from Western Europe and North
America since 2010. In eastern and southern Africa, the world’s most affected
region, the number of people receiving treatment has more than doubled to 10.3
million since 2010.
– the proportion of people in need of treatment who receive it – has risen from
24% in eastern and southern Africa in 2010 to 54% in 2015. Coverage reached 55%
in Latin America and the Caribbean in 2015 and 41% in the Asia Pacific region, but
remains extremely low in Eastern Europe and Central Asia at just 21% in 2015.
the expansion of treatment coverage over the past five years, new infections
have stopped declining worldwide after dramatic reductions in the previous
decade. Approximately 1.9 million people became infected with HIV in 2015.
Whereas the number of newly-infected people has remained stable in most regions and has
declined by 4% in eastern and southern Africa, the number who became infected
in Eastern Europe and Central Asia has more than doubled over the past five
order to achieve the targets set out in the draft declaration, infections in
Eastern Europe must be reduced from around 200,000 per year in 2015 to 44,000
by 2020, and from around 950,000 per year in 2015 to 210,000 in 2020 in eastern
and southern Africa.
says that if investments to reduce new infections and expand the numbers of
people receiving treatment are not front-loaded over the next five years, there
is a risk that epidemics will rebound in a number of lower- and middle-income
countries and the world will fail to achieve the 90-90-90 target by 2030.
of the financial costs and benefits of the Fast-Track approach in South Africa,
published this week in Annals of Internal
Medicine, estimates that pursuing the Fast-Track approach would cost an
extra $7.9 billion over five years and $15.9 billion over ten years – total increase
of 14% assuming funding would otherwise remain constant at $2.4 billion per
year. The extra investment would avert 2 million infections, 2.4 million deaths
and 1.6 million orphans. Pursuing very rapid scale up of treatment would be
highly cost effective for South Africa and would “offer a superb return on
investment,” the authors say.