U.N. Reports Drop in Africa HIV Cases

UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 17 (UPI) — Countries in sub-Saharan Africa are leading a global decline in the number of new HIV infection cases, the United Nations says.

UNAids said there was a drop in new cases of more than 25 percent in 22 countries in the world’s worst affected region, the BBC reported Friday.

The drop was credited to greater awareness and better use of preventative measures, UNAids said.

The world was making “real progress” towards achieving the goal of halting and reversing the spread of HIV/AIDS by 2015, UNAids Executive Director Michel Sidibe said.

“For the first time change is happening at the heart of the epidemic. In places where HIV was stealing away dreams, we now have hope,” he said.

But he warned “challenges remain” in the global fight against HIV/AIDS, including expanding epidemics in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, and resurgence in new infections in wealthier nations among gay men.

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