Sunday, December 1st marked the 25th anniversary of World AIDS day. HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, has become one of the world’s most serious health and development challenges:
- 33.4 million are currently living with HIV/AIDS.
- More than 25 million people have died of AIDS worldwide since the first cases were reported in 1981.
- In 2008, 2 million people died due to HIV/AIDS, and another 2.7 million were newly infected.
- While cases have been reported in all regions of the world, almost all those living with HIV (97%) reside in low- and middle-income countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.
- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), most people living with HIV or at risk for HIV do not have access to prevention, care, and treatment, and there is still no cure.
- The HIV epidemic not only affects the health of individuals, it impacts households, communities, and the development and economic growth of nations. Many of the countries hardest hit by HIV also suffer from other infectious diseases, food insecurity, and other serious problems.
- Despite these challenges, there have been successes and promising signs. New global efforts have been mounted to address the epidemic, particularly in the last decade. Prevention has helped to reduce HIV prevalence rates in a small but growing number of countries and new HIV infections are believed to be on the decline. In addition, the number of people with HIV receiving treatment in resource poor countries has increased 10-fold since 2002, reaching an estimated 4 million by 2008.
While I was at Blogalicious back in October, I had an opportunity to hear a presentation done by Oraquick. Oraquick has developed the first in-home oral HIV test.
I was lucky enough to receive a kit while at the conference and I’m offering the chance for one of my lucky readers to receive a kit of their own! Giveaway starts 12/2 and ends at midnight on 12/9. Good luck! Remember to also link up with the rest of the Motivation Monday crew!