Wednesday, December 1, 2010


A global AIDS report by the UN’s agency on AIDS says Cameroon can do more to increase HIV knowledge and behaviour change.

The report, released on Tuesday, November 22 says “less than half of young people [in Cameroon] can correctly answer five basic questions about HIV and its transmission.”

This document notes that the government of Cameroon is spending less than 0.1 percent of its domestic revenue on HIV programmes. UNAIDS says only 30 percent of adults who need HIV treatment are getting any. The situation is even worse for kids as only 11% of HIV positive children are receiving treatment.

On a positive side, the report acknowledges that 97,000 HIV positive people lived longer since 1996, thanks to treatment. New HIV infections have not risen by any significant number, meaning that the epidemic in the country is stabilizing.

UNAIDS has praised this development but is still calling for more investments in prevention programmes because for every one person who gets antiretroviral treatment, two more people become infected.

As of December 2009, there were an estimated number of six hundred and ten thousand people living with HIV in Cameroon, giving a prevalence rate of 5.1%.

Free HIV testing and counseling sites were created around some major towns and cities in the country at the end of November as part of the activities leading to World Aids Day today.

Globally, there are 33.3 million people living with HIV and about two-thirds of them live in Sub-Saharan Africa. According to UNAIDS, prevention efforts are paying off but at a slow pace. “We are breaking the trajectory of the AIDS epidemic with bold actions and smart choices,” says UNAIDS director Michel Sidibé. “Investments in the AIDS response are paying off, but gains are fragile—the challenge now is how we can all work to accelerate progress.”

(Report with thanks from

Take care and be SAFE

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