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    186143

    AIDS in Africa.

    Copson RW

    In: AIDS in Africa: Help the victims or ignore them?, edited by V. Lovell. New York, New York, Novinka Books, 2002. 1-21.

    Sub-Saharan Africa has been far more severely affected by AIDS than any other part of the world. According to a December 1, 2001 report issued by the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), some 28.1 million adults and children are infected with the HIV virus in the region, which has about 10% of the world's population but 70% of the worldwide total of infected people. The overall rate of infection among adults is about 8.4%, compared with 1.2% worldwide. UNAIDS projects that half or more of all 15 year-olds will eventually die of AIDS in some of the worst-affected countries, such as Zambia, South Africa, and Botswana, unless the risk of contracting the disease is sharply reduced. An estimated 19.3 million Africans have lost their lives to AIDS, including an estimated 2.3 million who died in 2001. UNAIDS estimates that 3.4 million new HIV infections occurred in 2001, down from the estimated 3.8 million new infections in 2000. Experts are cautious in suggesting that this decline might represent some success in prevention efforts, particularly since the adult infection rates continue to increase in a number of countries, including Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation. Moreover, they point out that 3.4 million new infections still represents a very fast and highly destructive rate of spread. AIDS has surpassed malaria as the leading cause of death in sub-Saharan Africa, and it kills many times more people than Africa's armed conflicts. (excerpt)
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