« German Police Stop School Massacre | Main | Alcohol poisoning death may lead to charges of suppliers »

AIDS infections cut back

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - The long overestimated size and course of the AIDS epedimic will be acknolwedged by the United Nations' top AIDS scientists this week. They believe the epeidemic has been slowling for nearly a decade, according to U.N. documents that were prepared for their announcement.

The annual new HIV infections are at 2.5 million, released today, which is a cut of more than 40 percent from last year's estimate, shown by documents. This year the worldwide total infected with HIV is 33 million, down from 40 million last year.http://www.startribune.com/722/story/1562266.html

Last year, according to UNAIDS, 78,000 people acquired HIV in North America, Western and Central Europe. It has been a stable number since 2002. http://data.unaids.org/pub/EPISlides/2007/071118_epi_regional%20factsheet_en.pdf

Belgian scientist Peter Piot has been leading The United Nations' AIDS agency, known as UNAIDS since its founding in 1995. He has been a major advocate for increasing spending to combat the epidemic which has reached as much as $10 billion a year over the past decade. http://www.startribune.com/722/story/1562266.html

"There was a tendency toward alarmism, and that fit perhaps a certain fundraising agenda," said Helen Epstein, author of "The Invisible Cure: Africa, the West, and the Fight Against AIDS." http://www.startribune.com/722/story/1562266.html