HIV/AIDS: The future of HIV epidemics and funding

Photo: Kristy Siegfried/IRIN

[www.irinnews.org]

JOHANNESBURG, 8 October 2010 (PlusNews) – New modelling has offered governments and donors a glimpse into the future of HIV epidemics – and what it will cost to prevent and treat them. Researchers warn of hard choices ahead and a need for some countries to take more responsibility for their national programmes.

Published in the 9 October edition of The Lancet medical journal, the study predicts that by 2031 – about 50 years into the HIV epidemic – annual new HIV infections will be roughly halved to about 1.2 million. New treatment guidelines recently suggested by the World Health Organization will raise treatment costs by 43 percent.

Costing four HIV prevention and treatment scenarios – including maintaining the status quo – the research estimated that without a cure or vaccine for HIV, as much as US$722 billion might be needed to tackle the virus by 2031 and that a third of this funding would need to be spent in Africa alone.

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