World AIDS Vaccine Day 2023
World AIDS Vaccine Day: May 18 is recognized as World AIDS Vaccine Day, an occasion that emphasizes the importance of creating a vaccine for the incurable illness. This day, also known as HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, not only raises awareness but also pays tribute to the dedicated scientists and researchers who are committed to developing a vaccine to prevent HIV/AIDS.
Significance of World AIDS Vaccine Day
According to the World Health Organization, HIV has resulted in the loss of 40.1 million lives thus far. HIV transmission is occurring globally, with certain countries observing a rise in new cases. Despite the absence of a cure for HIV infection, appropriate and efficient treatments and healthcare can significantly extend the lifespan and improve the well-being of individuals living with HIV.
History of World AIDS Vaccine Day
In a speech delivered on May 18, 1997, at Morgan State University in Maryland, former US President Bill Clinton emphasized the necessity of a genuinely effective preventive HIV vaccine to combat the transmission and ultimately eliminate HIV. In recognition of President Clinton’s address, May 18 was designated as World AIDS Vaccine Day, with its inaugural observance taking place the following year in 1998.
What is HIV infection?
HIV is a viral infection that specifically targets and weakens the immune system, rendering individuals more susceptible to diseases like tuberculosis, certain infections, and even cancer. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is known as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).
The transmission of HIV occurs through the exchange of certain body fluids such as breast milk, semen, blood, and vaginal fluids. However, it is important to note that HIV does not spread through activities like kissing, hugging, or sharing food. Effective treatment and prevention of HIV can be achieved through antiretroviral therapy (ART). By undergoing ART, individuals can achieve viral suppression, which prevents them from transmitting the virus to others. Ensuring early access to this therapy is crucial in effectively curtailing the spread of HIV.
Important takeaways for all competitive exams:
- World Health Organization Head: Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus;
- World Health Organization Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland;
- World Health Organization Founded: 7 April 1948;
- World Health Organization Parent organization: United Nations.
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