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International News

UNAIDS Chief: Spread of HIV in E. Europe Is Scary

November 30, 2010

New HIV infections in Eastern Europe and Central Asia in 2009 represented nearly three times the number the region recorded in 2000, UNAIDS recently reported. Last year, 76,000 people in the region died of AIDS-related causes, up from 18,000 in 2001.


"When we are seeing a positive movement happening in a different part of the world, we are scared of what is happening in Eastern Europe and Central Asia," said UNAIDS chief Michel Sidibe. "When we are seeing a decline in the rest of the world, we are seeing an increase of new infection in this part of the world." New UNAIDS figures show a 20 percent drop in new HIV infections worldwide over the past decade.

Combined, the Russian Federation and Ukraine comprise almost 90 percent of the region's newly reported infections.

Sidibe, who was in Vienna to sign a cooperative agreement between UNAIDS and AIDS Life, an organization that hosts the annual Life Ball fundraiser in Austria's capital, said prevention efforts are not reaching the main groups transmitting HIV in the region. Just 30 percent of the most at-risk populations have access to prevention services, and injection drug users have been driven underground, he noted. "That is very, very low if you want to change the trajectory of the epidemic," he said.

Back to other news for November 2010

Adapted from:
Associated Press
11.24.2010; Veronika Oleksyn

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
See Also
Eastern European Street Kids Facing "HIV Epidemic"
More on HIV/AIDS in Eastern Europe

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