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Tackling HIV/AIDS in Africa 40 years later

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For the first time since 2003, the number of new HIV infections among children has not fallen year-on-year, and in sub-Saharan Africa, new cases have risen slightly. This detail is contained in data accompanying a new report released by UNAIDS.

It shows that globally, 160 000 children aged zero to 14, newly acquired HIV in 2020, the same number as in 2019. In sub-Saharan Africa, 130 thousand new infections were reported among children in 2020, a slight rise on the 126 thousand new infections reported in 2019.

President and CEO of mothers2mothers, Frank Beadle de Palomo, says as world leaders gather next week for a UN High-Level Meeting on HIV/AIDS, they hope that they will react to this concerning development and pass a strong declaration that prioritises our youngest citizensm:

“This concerning new data provide evidence that progress to ensure a new generation starts life HIV-free has stalled, perhaps due to service interruptions due to COVID-19. Since the vast majority of infections among children aged 0-14 occur during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding, this means we must redouble efforts to identify pregnant women living with HIV and ensure that they are started and kept on the effective treatment that will keep them healthy and can also stop HIV transmission to their children.”

Source: SABC

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