RHO: Reproductive Health Outlook

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Special Report

The XIII International AIDS Conference

The XIII International AIDS Conference brought world leaders and researchers to Durban, South Africa, from July 9-14, 2000, to discuss the scientific, economic, cultural, and political issues impacting the HIV/AIDS pandemic. With the theme "Breaking the Silence," this conference brought international attention to HIV/AIDS and the need to provide equal access to treatment, improve prevention strategies, support HIV education and counseling, and provide resources for people living with HIV/AIDS.

Statistics describe a disease epidemic growing quickly out of control. The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) estimates that over 13 million children under age 15 have lost their mother or both parents to AIDS (UNAIDS, 2000). This crisis dominates the African continent. While 200,000 people were killed by war in 1999, AIDS killed an estimated 2,200,000 people. (See www.unicef.org.uk/breakthesilence   for more information). With approximately 95 percent of HIV-infected individuals living in developing countries, the XIII International AIDS Conference -- the first convened on the African continent -- reflected the growing awareness that HIV/AIDS research and policies must address the devastating impact that this disease inflicts on developing nations.

Research abstracts and discussion sessions presented findings from a variety of disciplines, ranging from epidemiology, medicine, health behavior, and health policy. Key developments presented at the XIII International AIDS Conference included:

For more information on the XIII International AIDS Conference, please view the session reports at www.aids2000.com/. To view a selection of the conference highlights at the AIDS 2000 Webcast, visit http://webcast.aids2000.com/.

Additional conference summaries can be found at

http://hiv.medscape.com/medscape/cno/2000/AIDS/public/Conference.cfm? conference_id=59 (Requires free online registration)


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