UNAIDS and partners publish report revealing inequalities in access to HIV prevention and treatment services for children

03 August 2021

Article: 55/3105

Together with partner organisations, UNAIDS has published the final report from the Start free, Stay free, AIDS free framework, established with the aim of ending AIDS among children, adolescents and young women by 2020.

The report shows that the total number of children on treatment declined for the first time since the framework was launched in 2015, despite the fact that nearly 800,000 children living with HIV are not currently on treatment. The report also shows that opportunities to identify infants and young children living with HIV early are being missed, with more than one-third of children born to mothers living with HIV not being tested. If untreated, around 50% of children living with HIV die before they reach their second birthday.

Although the 2020 targets were missed, the 21 focus countries in Africa made better progress than non-focus nations. However, there were major disparities between countries, with 11 accounting for nearly 70% of those children living with HIV but not on treatment. There was a 24% decline in new HIV infections among children from 2015 to 2020 in focus countries, against a 20% decline globally. Focus countries also achieved 89% treatment coverage for pregnant women living with HIV, compared to 85% globally, but still short of the 95% target.

Source: UNAIDS, 21 July 2021