Epidemic of HIV AND AIDS WOMEN AND CHILDREN

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On June 5, 1981, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued its first warning about a relatively rare form of pneumonia amongst a small group of young gay men in Los Angeles, which was later determined to be AIDS-related. Since that time, tens of millions of people have been infected with HIV worldwide. This global epidemiology of HIV/AIDS is evolving in low and middle income countries. Women and adolescent females in Sub-Saharan Africa are more at risk of HIV due to an extreme number of complex biological, behavioral and structural factors. HIV infection among women primarily drives the pediatric HIV epidemic. Postnatal transmission of HIV during breastfeeding is a major concern in low and middle income countries, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa where breastfeeding is the only safe and culturally acceptable feeding choice. In sub-Saharan Africa alone, out of the twenty three million adults ages from fifteen to forty nine are infected with HIV, 13.1 million (57%) are women. In Zambia for example, women and girls are highly vulnerable to HIV and AIDS, and women aged fifteen to twenty four are three times more likely to be infected than males in the same age group.

According to the, Kaiser Family Foundation statistics, Sub-Saharan Africa is the hardest hit region, and is home to seventy one percent of people living with HIV and about twelve percent of the world’s population. Most children with HIV live in this region which is eighty eight percent. South Africa has the highest number of people living with HIV in the world which is, four point three million. Swaziland has the highest prevalence rate in the world, twenty five percent, with women being the highest number. About one point six million people are estimated to be living with HIV in Latin America and the Caribbean combined, including ninety eight thousand newly infected in 2012. Seven countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have generalized epidemics and Brazil with the

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