Since the beginning of the HIV epidemic, around 78 million people have been infected and 35 million died because of AIDS. There are now 37 million people living with HIV worldwide, 18 million of which are having treatment.
Last year there were approximately 2 million new infections among adults. This number has not dropped in the last 5 years. Almost half of these infections occurs in vulnerable populations: sex workers, intravenous drug users, transgender people, incarcerated people and men who have sex with men.
Ending the HIV-epidemic is one of the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals. More efforts are thus needed to reach this goal by 2030. We also have to ensure that people who live with HIV in our society have as many opportunities as people living without the virus.
Event in the parliament
The Parliamentarians for the 2030 agenda invited two people to talk about how it is to live with HIV. Grâce Ntunzwenimana and Patrick Reyntiens are the coordinators of the Positive Council, an official advisory body for the HIV-policy in Belgium. Grâce works for SidAids Migrants du Siréas, an HIV prevention organisation aimed at migrants and refugees. Patrick has been living with HIV for 31 years, works for Sensoa, and just published an autobiography about living with HIV in Belgium. Minister Maggie De Block attended the event and explicitly supported the global fight against HIV.