World Aids Day 2018

Today is World AIDS day. It’s a day to remember that while there is treatment available not everyone with this virus gets the knowledge or care they need. And the stigma surrounds AIDS is still prevelant around the world. In the US, the CDC is working with partners in the U.S. and around the world to achieve a future free of HIV. (from CDC.gov)

Today, nearly 22 million people living with HIV have access to life-saving medication. AIDS-related deaths have been cut in half in over a decade and the number of babies born each day with HIV has declined by two-thirds in the same timeframe. (from RED.org)

RED works with a variety of organizations in Africa to promote safe sex and access to resources. HIV prevention has come a long way with advancements in science, technology and innovative solutions.  Several methods and interventions have proved highly effective in reducing the risk and preventing HIV infection including condoms, the use of antiretroviral medicines as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), voluntary male medical circumcision (VMMC), behavior change interventions, scaling up sexual reproductive health education, and the treatment of people living with HIV to reduce viral load and prevent onward transmission.  However, despite these successes, there are still nearly 2 million new infections annually of a preventable disease.  In order to end the epidemic, the world needs to apply increased funding and focus towards HIV prevention programs. (red.org)

Knowledge is important and knowing if you have HIV is the only way to stay healthy and stop transmission. In order to be treated for HIV, you need to know you have it. A key driver to ending the AIDS epidemic is ensuring that all HIV-positive people know their status and have access to treatment services.  Today, two-thirds of all people living with HIV know their status, and last year, for the first time in the history of the epidemic, more than half the people living with HIV were on live-saving ARV treatment.  If properly adhered to. ARV treatment, which costs as little as 20 cents a day, not only keeps an HIV-positive person alive and healthy, but also reduces the risk of transmission.  There’s been incredible progress in scaling up access to testing and treatment services and as a result, AIDS related deaths have halved and new infections among children have declined by 61% over the past decade. (red.org)

Education is key. Worldwide, young people are more at risk of becoming infected with HIV than any other population. Two-thirds of young people globally do not have the correct and comprehensive knowledge of how to prevent HIV and as a result, roughly every two minutes, an adolescent is infected with HIV. While a lack of education is a real challenge, stigma and discrimination also undermine access to basic public health services. With increased awareness and better access to education programs in at risk communities, young people are becoming a driving force behind achieving an AIDS-free generation by 2030. (red.org)

Purchase products that give to organizations like (RED) to fight AIDS globally. Or give to (RED) financially, or other local health care organizations that provide STD testing.

A Balthazar & Rose red Fouta

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