Global Health

Uganda, Abstinence and the Spread of HIV

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Doctors, philanthropists and community activists are now meeting at the International AIDS conference in Toronto, Canada, to discuss ways to fight the spread of the disease.

Uganda's HIV prevention model has been held up as a showcase for other countries to emulate. It's called the A-B-C approach — Abstain, Be faithful or use a Condom.

The United States says ABC led to a dramatic drop in AIDS infections in Uganda during the 1990s. But health workers say the Bush administration's emphasis on abstinence over condom use has hurt Uganda's AIDS rate. As a result, they say, Uganda's HIV rate is no longer falling.

Fred de Sam Lazaro of Twin Cities Public Television reports.

AIDS Snapshot


— 65 million total HIV infections

— 25 million HIV deaths

— 38.6 million people currently living with HIV


— 2.8 million people died of AIDS

— 4.1 million people were newly infected


— Southern Africa is the epicenter of the global epidemic

— 64 percent of the world's HIV population lives in sub-Sahara African

— Transmission is primarily through heterosexual contact

— More women are HIV infected than men

— More than 10 percent of the adult population (15 to 49 years) is infected in most Southern African countries

— In Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland and Zimbabwe, more than 20 percent of the adult population is infected

— South Africa (along with India) has largest number of people, 5.5 million, living with HIV

— 17 percent of those in need of antiretroviral treatment receive it


— The U.S. has seen resurgence in HIV transmission in recent years, primarily among men

— An estimated 800,000 people are infected

— 25 percent of those infected don't know

— 44 percent of new infections are in gay men

— Blacks and Hispanics account for 69 percent of all reported HIV cases

— 55 percent of those in need of antiretroviral treatment receive it

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention



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