December 1, World Aids Day, 2001

UNAids estimates that by the end of 2001, there will be 28 Million people in Sub-Saharan Africa living with HIV, out of a global total of 40 Million people infected. That is 8.4% of the population of the region.
3.8 million of these were infected in the last year, mostly through heterosexual sex.
2.4 million children under 15 have the disease, 700 000 infected in the last year. Many are born with it. Half a million are expected to die this year from it.
Over 12 million African children have been orphaned by Aids.

In Zimbabwe, Aids causes 70% of all deaths under the age of five. Zimbabwe has finally achived Zero Population Growth

Average life expectance in South Africa is now 47 years. It is estimated that without AIDS, this would be 66 years.
HIV is the most common cause of death in South Africa across all age groups.
In the age group 15-49, i.e. sexually active adults, it accounts for 40% of all deaths.
Out of 45 million people in South Africa, an estimated 4.5 million have HIV.
In the KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa, the HIV infection rate is conservatively estimated at 38%.

The disease is still stigmatised. When an African dies after an unnamed illness, you can be confident that it was AIDS.

Another year ends, but no end is in sight for the pandemic.

Facts and numbers from the Weekly Mail & Guardian, 30 November 2001

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