Putting the Health of Young Mothers First: Key to Stopping AIDS

Craig McClure – Huffinton Post – Tuesday, 03 December 2013 (originally published 29 Nov)

Activists of a non-governmental organization display red ribbons, symbol of HIV-AIDS awareness, as they pose for photographers during an awareness campaign on World AIDS Day, in a business district of Bangalore, India, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013. UNAIDS lists India as third worst Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) affected country with about 2.5 million infected people after South Africa with 6 million and Nigeria with 2.9 million.
Image: AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi

A young woman in sub-Saharan Africa is as much as four times more likely to be infected with HIV than a young man her age. While anti-retroviral drugs have saved countless lives, HIV is still the leading cause of death for women in their reproductive years.

Young women are the most vulnerable to HIV. If we are to stop the epidemic, we must give them the means to protect their health.

Today UNICEF released the 6th Stocktaking Report on Children and AIDS. The Report is showcasing the breakthroughs in the 30 year epidemic, which now make it possible to nearly eliminate the risk of women living with HIV passing the virus to their babies . . .

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