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More than five million people receiving HIV treatment

WHO advises earlier treatment among people with HIV

19 JULY 2010 | GENEVA | VIENNA — An estimated 5.2 million people in low and middle-income countries were receiving life-saving HIV treatment at the end of 2009, according to the latest update from WHO.

WHO estimates that 1.2 million people started treatment in 2009, bringing the total number of people receiving treatment to 5.2 million, compared to 4 million at the end of 2008.


“This is the largest increase in people accessing treatment in a single year. It is an extremely encouraging development,” says Dr Hiroki Nakatani, WHO Assistant Director-General for HIV, Tuberculosis, Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases.

At the XVIII International AIDS Conference, WHO is calling for earlier treatment for people with HIV. The objective is to begin HIV treatment before they become ill because of weakened immunity.

“Starting treatment earlier gives us an opportunity to enable people living with HIV to stay healthier and live longer,” says Dr Gottfried Hirnschall, WHO Director of HIV/AIDS.

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