A new report from the United Nations is declaring a dramatic reduction in HIV/AIDS cases among children in Africa.
In a joint announcement with the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the U.N. reports a 60 percent drop in new infections among African children. The two global organizations are claiming to have prevented 1.2 million new HIV infections in 21 priority countries since 2009.
"These astounding results show that the world is on the Fast-Track to eliminating new HIV infections among children and ensuring that their mothers are alive and healthly," said U.N. AIDS Executive Director Michael Sidibe, in a news release. “It is beautiful to know that we could soon have a generation free from HIV.”
The report was released on Wednesday at a general assembly meeting in New York. Titled "On the Fast-Track to an AIDS-free generation," the report shows great progress in the sub-Saharan region of Africa. Seven countries, the report discloses, have reduced new HIV infections among children by more than 70 percent. Uganda leads the way with a reported 86 percent reduction.
Since the U.N.’s global plan for HIV/AIDS was launched in 2009, 21 countries have been designated priority. Six of those countries (Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland and Uganda) achieved a goal of 90 percent or higher of pregnant women living with HIV/AIDS having access to antiretroviral medicines.
"This shows what is possible through the combined power of science, communities and focused action," said Deborah Birx, U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator, in a news release.