New figures released by the World Health Organization and UNAIDS estimate the number of new HIV infections have declined each year by about 17% from 2001 to 2008, but for every five people infected, only two start treatment.
According to the 2009 AIDS epidemic update released in Shanghai, China on 24th November, about 2.7 million people were newly infected with HIV last year, compared with about 3.3 million in 2001.
This year’s World AIDS Day theme of Universal Access and Human Rights highlights the critical link between universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support and respect for human rights in the response to the global AIDS epidemic.
Below are four actions that governments, international organisations and civil society can take to ensure the sexual and reproductive health and rights of HIV positive women:
- Empower women living with HIV by providing access to information on their sexual and reproductive health and rights
- Invest in HIV comprehensive prevention strategies that are grounded in sexual and reproductive health and rights and that ensure access to comprehensive services to meet the needs of all women – especially women living with HIV.
- Support laws and policies that create a safe and secure world that protect the rights of HIV positive women to make free and responsible choices for their sexual and reproductive health.
- Provide safe spaces without stigma and discrimination, especially for women living with HIV.