UNAIDS calls for integration of services to end the dual epidemics of tuberculosis and HIV
GENEVA, 24 March 2015 - On World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, UNAIDS is calling for the scale-up of integrated HIV and TB services, particularly in the countries and regions most affected by the dual epidemics. Worldwide, 9 million people developed TB in 2013 and 1.5 million people still die of the disease every year. TB entrenches poverty in many countries, with annual income falling by an average of around 50% among affected families.
TB also remains a leading cause of death among people living with HIV. There were around 360 000 TB-related deaths in 2013 among people affected by HIV and about 1.1 million people living with HIV developed TB.
However, if people living with HIV start antiretroviral therapy they reduce the risk of developing active TB disease. Early diagnosis of HIV and access to treatment reduces the risk of contracting TB by 65%. When treatment of latent TB infection is combined with antiretroviral therapy, the risk of developing active TB disease falls by about 90%.
If people living with HIV do develop active TB disease, immediate access to antiretroviral therapy and TB treatment (isoniazid preventive therapy) can reduce their chance of dying by 50%. Diagnosis of TB in people living with HIV and HIV testing for all people with presumptive and diagnosed TB are therefore crucial.
UNAIDS supports community-based efforts to build innovative and integrated approaches to HIV and TB that ensure that everyone has earlier access to HIV and TB prevention, testing and treatment services. By coordinating and intensifying efforts to support people living with HIV and TB, the epidemics can be reduced and ended in parallel. To do this, community support and mobilization will be crucial to increasing awareness about testing and treatment options and to strengthening health-care capacities.
A new strategy launched by the World Health Organization, Gear Up to End TB, proposes increased collaboration between TB and HIV services, the strengthening of health systems, the engagement of communities, improved social protection and intensified research and innovation. The strategy aims to reduce TB deaths by 95% and new cases of TB by 90% by 2035.
UNAIDS has established ambitious 90–90–90 treatment targets: 90% of people living with HIV know their HIV status, 90% of people who know their HIV-positive status are on treatment and 90% of people on HIV treatment having a suppressed viral load so their immune system remains strong and they are no longer infectious. UNAIDS is also working towards a Fast-Track Target of reducing new HIV infections to less than half a million a year by 2020.
UNAIDS will continue to work closely with countries, donors and partners, including the World Health Organization, the Stop TB Partnership, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and the United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, to produce sustainable solutions to fully integrate and deliver critical HIV and TB services.
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The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) leads and inspires the world to achieve its shared vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations—UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, UN Women, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank—and works closely with global and national partners to maximize results for the AIDS response. Learn more at unaids.org and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter .
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