AIDS pandemic far from over, says Amina Mohammed
The United Nations (UN) Deputy Secretary General, Amina Mohammed, has warned that the AIDS pandemic was still far from over, saying over 36.7 million people are living with HIV globally.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Mohammed, while addressing delegations at the UN General Assembly’s annual review of the secretary general’s report, this year called for a reinvigorated global response to HIV/AIDS, noting that tackling it requires a life-cycle approach based on community-level solutions.
According to her, global optimism has fuelled a major push to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030, the highest ambition within the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
“I am happy to report that, today, more babies than ever are being born free from HIV. Now, we need to do a better job of reaching young women and adolescent girls.
“This is particularly true for sub-Saharan Africa, where adolescent girls account for three out of four new HIV infections among 15 to 19-year-olds.
“Achieving our aims on AIDS is interlinked and embedded within the broader 2030 Agenda. Both are grounded in equity, human rights and a promise to leave no one behind,” Mohammed added.
Last year, the UN political declaration on ending AIDS set the world on a fast-track to stamp out the epidemic by 2030.
In the first phase, countries agreed to reduce new HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths to fewer than 500,000 by 2020 and to eliminate HIV-related stigma and discrimination.
However, according to the report, with less than four years to go, progress on reducing new HIV infections among adults had stalled, while financing for the global response had dried up and more importantly, women and girls continued to bear the brunt of the AIDS epidemic.
“While more than 18 million are now on life-saving treatment, this is just half of those who need it, and there is no decline in the number of new infections each year.
“People living with HIV who are on treatment can now expect the same life expectancy as someone who is not infected,” the UN chief said.
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