• May 30, 2024

World AIDS Vaccine Day 2023

World AIDS Vaccine Day is observed on May 18 to raise awareness of the need for a vaccine against the incurable disease.

The day is also known as HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, and it provides an opportunity to recognize the efforts of scientists and researchers who seek to develop a vaccine to prevent HIV/AIDS.

History

Former US President Bill Clinton delivered a speech at Morgan State University in Maryland on May 18, 1997. Only a “truly effective, preventive HIV vaccine” would help control and eradicate HIV, he stated. In recognition of the president’s speech, World AIDS Vaccine Day was observed on May 18. A year later, in 1999, the day was first celebrated.

Significance

According to the World Health Organization, 40,1 million individuals have died as a result of HIV. All nations are experiencing HIV transmission, and some are even reporting an increase in new infections. There is currently no cure for HIV infection. However, essential and effective remedies and care can help HIV-positive individuals live extended and healthier lives.

What is HIV disease?

HIV, or human immunodeficiency virus, is an infection that targets and impairs the immune system. This makes an individual more susceptible to diseases such as tuberculosis, certain infections, and even cancer. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

The HIV virus can be transmitted through a person’s bodily fluids, including breast milk, sperm, blood, and vaginal fluids. The virus is not transmitted through kissing, embracing, or food sharing. Antiretroviral therapy (ART) has the ability to both treat and prevent HIV.

Those who receive ART have viral suppression and cannot transmit the disease. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that individuals have early access to the therapy in order to effectively prevent the spread of HIV.

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