HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. The virus compromises the body’s ability to handle disease and causes AIDS. This is a slow process, and positive people may not have symptoms for over a decade.
AIDS stands for acquired immune deficiency syndrome. It is related to HIV, but they are not one in the same. A person has AIDS only in the final stages of HIV, after the immune system becomes unable to defend itself against foreign invaders like bacteria, other viruses, and fungi, and allows for the development of certain cancers.
- There are an estimated 2 million children under 15 living with HIV, nearly 90 percent live in sub-Saharan Africa.
- Although about 33 percent of HIV-positive pregnant women receive drug therapies to prevent the transmission of HIV to their infants, only 11 percent of HIV-positive women in sub-Saharan Africa who need antiretrovirals have access.
- Currently, less than 10 percent of HIV-positive children in need of treatment are being treated.