The HIV and AIDS epidemic in Africa continues to be a major global health issue. In 2016, an estimated 36.7 million people were living with HIV, and 30% of these same people do not know that they have the virus.
For vulnerable communities with a high prevalence of HIV/AIDS, the epidemic has caused severe damage to social and economic structures, exacerbating social and economic inequities. HIV and AIDS have taken a terrible toll particularly on children and their families. During the past 30 years, an estimated 17 million children lost one or both parents due to AIDS, and 90% of these children live in sub-Saharan Africa. In addition, 3.4 million children under age 15 are living with HIV.
HIV and AIDS can destroy families and ravage communities. Without HIV/AIDS treatment and support for HIV-affected households, parents struggle to support their households and care for their children; children may be too sick to attend school, or forced to stay home and care for sick family members.
However, knowledge, skills, support, and access to services for infectious disease prevention and treatment can have a major impact on preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS and improving the overall health and well-being of a country. PCI has been active in HIV/AIDS disease prevention infectious disease control and response since the early 1990s. PCI’s current portfolio spans the range of prevention, care, treatment, and support interventions, including orphans and vulnerable children (OVC), in several countries around the world, including three in sub-Saharan Africa.
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