HIV VIRUS IN
AIDS is a leading cause of death in Uganda, killing more than 200 people a day, devastating the 25-40 year-old segment of the population, and leaving behind more than 2.4 million orphans since the epidemic's onset. 60% of all people living with HIV/AIDS in the country are women. In Uganda today, 63% of all orphans are living without both natural parents.
Uganda was one of the first nations on the African continent to implement policies and programs to combat the HIV/AIDS epidemic, serving as a model for reversing this worldwide health crisis. Partnerships between government, non-governmental, and community-based organizations and the private sector have been vital to mitigating the impact of Uganda's crisis.
In the last decade, Uganda has reduced HIV infection rates from 30% of the population in 1993 to 7% in 2007. However, without access to anti-retroviral drugs, this decline is due in part to the near certain mortality of people living with AIDS as much as it reflects the aggressive and effective campaign to curtail new infections. Uganda's crisis is far from over. Continued vigilance to ensure a declining rate of infection is crucial even as Uganda struggles to provide care and comfort for the sick and secure the basic rights to food, shelter, medicine and education for its children. HIV/AIDS will continue to impact Uganda for generations to come.