Over 1,200 people live with HIV in Afghanistan: Officials

Today marks World AIDS Day, a time for the global community to recognize the widespread impact of HIV/AIDS.

Right now, around 1,200 people in Afghanistan and 33.4 million people around the world live with HIV/AIDS, according to the Afghan Public Health Ministry.

AIDS, or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, is caused by HIV, or the human immunodeficiency virus, and is considered the last step of the infection. AIDS has killed 25 million people around the world since 1981, the Department of Health reported.

A spokesman for the Afghan Public Health Ministry Dr. Kaneshka Baktash over 10 people have died due to HIV/AIDS in Afghanistan.

He said majority of the men addicted to drugs are infected with HIV and there are around 23,000 addicted individuals who are using syringe to injection drugs in their body.

Even though there has yet to be a definitive cure for AIDS, there is a lot of progress in terms of controlling infection, preventing its spread, and decreasing deaths from AIDS.

Despite the advances in medical technology and the reduction of new HIV infections annually due to antiretroviral drugs, the number of people worldwide living with HIV has risen considerably, from around 8 million in 1990 to 33 million at the end of 2009.

Approximately 2.6 million people are infected with HIV annually, and 1.8 million die from AIDS.

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