Published: Thu, November 29, 2018
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Party leaders take HIV test to highlight World AIDS Day

Party leaders take HIV test to highlight World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day is a day which draws attention to the millions of people around the world living with HIV. More than 130,000 of those diagnoses were in Europe's eastern region, the most ever reported there.

All told, nearly 160,000 people were diagnosed in Europe with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which causes AIDS, according to data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the World Health Organisation's (WHO) regional office for Europe.

Despite the huge progress made in controlling the global endemic since the 1980s, Europe saw almost 160,000 new HIV cases in 2017.

WHO Regional Director for Europe Zsuzsanna Jakab has called forth the governments to "scale up" their responses.

The increase in new HIV diagnoses continued for the WHO European Region as a whole, but its pace was slower than in previous years. "To support people living with HIV and protect those at higher risk of infection, we need to fast track action by tailoring interventions". In Western Europe, however, the number of infectious is reduced, such as from a recent report by the world health organization (WHO) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). In the central part of the Region, the increase was 121% compared with 142% respectively.

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The report finds that there have been 160,000 new diagnosis in 2017.

During 2017, of the 84 new cases diagnosed in Northern Ireland, 45 (54%) occurred through MSM transmission, while 26 (31%) occurred through heterosexual transmission. The highest rates of newly diagnosed HIV infections were observed in Russian Federation in 2017, the World Health Organization's European office and the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control said in a report published on Wednesday. This translates into a decline from a rate of 6.9 per 100 000 population in 2008, to 6.2 per 100 000 in 2017.

Those who inject drugs using a hypodermic needle are 23 times more likely to catch HIV and female sex workers 13 percent more likely. They attribute that news to a 20 percent decrease in HIV diagnoses among men who have sex with men since 2015. "Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination has made concrete and concerted efforts through the National AIDS Control Programme to promote HIV awareness and adopted a high impact evidence based approach for the coming years focusing on both prevention and treatment of the disease through working directly with the affected communities".

The overall trend suggested the European region would not achieve the United Nations target of eliminating HIV/AIDS by 2030.

The momentum to revamp political commitment to end AIDS by 2030 has never been so strong in the European Region. As a result, country-specific roadmaps are in development to reinforce a common agenda among key policy-makers, partners, funders and implementers.

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