In commemoration of World Aids Day 2012 on December 1st, the US has unveiled the new US blueprint for an AIDS free generation. The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Blueprint : Creating an AIDS free generation, provides a roadmap for how the US government will work to help achieve a generation free of AIDS. The disease has plagued many African countries for decades and while some progress has been made in reducing the rate of infection of the HIV virus and in managing the disease, there is still a long way to go. This, therefore, is good news for Africa and the rest of the world. The blue print gives practical steps to achieve the set goal. As US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “Make no mistake about it, HIV may well be with us into the future but the disease that it causes need not be.” As it stands today, only about 8 million HIV patients in developing countries are getting treatment. The United Nations aims to have 15 million treated by 2015.
Africa has made positive strides in this area, with South Africa being commended during the speech for its efficiency in distributing antiretroviral drugs over the last four years. Just last week, UNAIDS announced that, over the past decade, the rate of new HIV infections has dropped by more than half in 25 low-and-middle-income countries, most of them in Sub-Saharan Africa. Zimbabwe registered a 50 percent reduction; Namibia, a 68 percent reduction; and Malawi, a 73 percent reduction in the rate of new infections.
The beginning of the end of an AIDs ridden generation seems to be here. A lot of effort still needs to be invested into the project but the goal is achievable. Soon all the horrors of AIDs will be forgotten and the world we are all looking forward to, for ourselves and the future generation.