Global HIV Prevalence "Dramatically Overstated," Boston Globe Reports
June 21, 2004
Global HIV prevalence could be "dramatically overstated" because of statistical modeling errors and "undetected" declines in HIV prevalence in several countries, the Boston Globe reports. According to the Globe, some HIV/AIDS experts believe the estimate that there are 40 million people living with HIV worldwide could be inflated by 25% to 50%. Reducing HIV prevalence estimates for several countries would "go against the grain" of years of statements by UNAIDS that said HIV/AIDS was "relentlessly on the rise," according to the Globe. However, U.N. epidemiologists and statisticians who have produced the current estimates say that the estimates for some countries will be "sharply cut" in a report to be released before the XV International AIDS Conference that will be held in Bangkok, Thailand, in July. The UNAIDS report, which will include HIV prevalence estimates for 2003, is expected to say that HIV prevalence is declining in East Africa, "leveling off" in West Africa and still "maintaining a high rate" in Southern Africa, according to the Globe. The UNAIDS report also is expected to reduce the organization's estimate of Rwanda's HIV prevalence to about 5%, compared with 11% in 1999, according to the Globe.
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.