Introduction: Globalization’s Pandemic
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Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a collection of seventy or more conditions, which result from damage caused by a retrovirus to the immune system – the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). The virus can remain in the body for years before any visible symptoms of the disease appear. The virus chips away at the body’s immune system and its host becomes susceptible to other viruses and cancers, until it eventually dies. It is spread from human to human through sex, blood, and from mother to foetus or infant. Extensive spread began in the mid-1970s and AIDS has since become a global pandemic. According to the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) Epidemic Update of December 2002, 29.4 million out of the 42 million people globally living with HIV infection are in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). As of 2000 the continent had buried more than 75 per cent of more than 20 million people who had died of AIDS. In the region, women are infected young, and show a higher prevalence of the disease. And they also shoulder the main burden of the epidemic.
KeywordsHuman Immunodeficiency Virus Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection Acquire Immune Deficiency Syndrome Institutional Response Public Health Response
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