Towards Universal Access by 2010

African experiences

1 December 2006

Photo by WHO/ Vanie Zeoua Ben-Harley
Women and children of Chigata-Hope, an NGO set up by Rose Dossou, an HIV-positive mother and activist, Côte d'Ivoire

As estimated at the end of 2007, 33 million people around the world are now living with HIV. The HIV/AIDS epidemic continues to worsen in many parts of the world, particularly in countries where the response suffers from major weaknesses in health care systems.

WHO is focusing its support to countries on five strategic areas that are key in strengthening health services to fight HIV/AIDS. The WHO focus areas are:

  • Expanding HIV testing and counselling;
  • Maximizing HIV prevention;
  • Accelerating treatment scale-up;
  • Strengthening health systems; and
  • Investing in strategic information.

These stories also bring to life the many challenges that exist within health sectors in countries and which will need to be addressed as the international community moves towards universal access to HIV services by 2010.

Ha Makhoathi in Thaba-Bosui, Lesotho: strategies to decrease lost opportunities of HIV testing
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Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire: aspiring to prevent HIV transmission from mothers to babies
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Kigali, Rwanda: lack of paediatric formulations for HIV
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Bahir Dar, Ethiopia: health workers and infrastructure lacking in country
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Mbabane, Swaziland: HIV data collection in the field
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