Today is World AIDS Day, so go ahead and wear your red ribbon, don’t be affraid, it will not hurt!
HIV is one of the biggest social, economic and health challenges in the world. It is a global emergency claiming over 8,000 lives every day. In fact 5 people die of AIDS every minute. HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. This is the virus known to cause AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). If someone is HIV-positive, it means they have been infected with the virus. A person infected with HIV does not have AIDS until the virus seriously damages their immune system, making them vulnerable to a range of infections, some of which can lead to death. HIV is transmitted through body fluids in particular blood, semen, vaginal secretions and breast milk, in fact there are only four ways you can become HIV positive. In 2005, over 3 million people acquired HIV, which means there are now over 40 million people living with HIV and AIDS. Despite best efforts from governments, non-profit organisations and healthcare practitioners around the world, HIV and AIDS is still having huge global impact.