UN report marks spread of Aids
An estimated 33.4 million people around the world are infected with the Aids virus, but many are living longer due to the availability of HIV drugs, a UN report has said. The report by the World Health Organisation and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/Aids (UNaids) was issued in Shanghai on Tuesday. While the figure represents an increase from 33 million in 2007, the report suggested that was likely caused by more infected people getting access to HIV drugs. “The number of Aids-related deaths has declined by over 10 per cent over the past five years as more people gained access to life-saving treatment,” it said. In sub-Saharan Africa, the region worst hit by Aids, there were 400,000 fewer infections in 2008, down 15 per cent compared to 2001. New HIV infections declined by nearly 25 per cent in East Asia and 10 per cent in south and southeast Asia within the same time frame.