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HOME: POPULATION ISSUES: PREVENTING HIV INFECTION: HIV/AIDS Update 2002
Preventing HIV Infection
HIV/AIDS Update 2002
Strategy for Prevention
Country Commitments
Regional Response
Global Action
Conclusion: Challenges
Strategy for Prevention

The current situation
Why focus on prevention?
Strategy for prevention
Core areas of support
Young people, Condom programming, Pregnant women
Enabling environment
Mainstreaming gender concerns, Population and development concerns, Advocacy and partnerships, Capacity building

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The current situation


“Collective experience with HIV/AIDS has evolved to the point where it is now possible to state with confidence that it is technically, politically and financially feasible to contain HIV/AIDS and dramatically reduce its spread and impact.”

Kofi Annan
Secretary-General of the United Nations

HIV has infected 60 million people to date. Each day 14,000 new HIV infections add to the epidemic’s staggering impact on health and, ultimately, on the social and economic stability of nations.

But lives can be saved if people are willing and able to adopt safer and healthier behaviours for their sexual and reproductive health. Helping them do so is a UNFPA priority.

UNFPA supports reproductive health programmes in more than 140 countries — nearly all with interventions to prevent HIV infection. The Fund focuses on HIV prevention among young people and pregnant women, as well as condom programming.

This work is carried out through reproductive health programmes in diverse situations, from community-based services to humanitarian assistance in times of crisis.

Prevention is of the highest priority, given the current situation:

  • The toll is rising. About 40 million people are living with HIV/AIDS worldwide today, a number that is 50 per cent higher than the figure projected in 1991;


  • 5 million men, women and children were newly infected in 2001. Every hour of every day, almost 600 people are infected;


  • Half of all new infections occur among young people aged 15 to 24, who now make up one third of those living with HIV/AIDS. In sub-Saharan Africa, young women are now up to six times more likely than young men to be infected with HIV;


  • HIV/AIDS is now the leading cause of death in sub-Saharan Africa. Worldwide, it is the fourth-biggest killer. In 2001 alone, AIDS claimed 3 million lives.

Estimated number of adults and children newly infected with HIV in 2001:
Estimated no. of adults and children newly infected with HIV in 2001
Source: UNAIDS, AIDS Epidemic Update: December 2001

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