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Gender and HIV/AIDS

World Health Organisation | November, 01 , 2003
World Health Organisation | Download (77)
Globally, the number of people living with HIV/AIDS stood at 42 million at the end of 2002, 5 million of them newly infected during the course of that year. Sub-Saharan Africa is by far the most affected region in the world. The number of global AIDS deaths at the end of 2002 was estimated at 3.1 million, of which 2.4 million occurred in Africa. Almost as many women as men are now dying of AIDS. However, there are important differences between women and men in the underlying mechanisms of HIV/AIDS infection and in the social and economic consequences of HIV/AIDS. These stem from biology, sexual behaviour and socially constructed ‘gender’ differences between women and men in roles and responsibilities, access to resources and decision-making power. A number of studies have examined the role of gender inequalities on women’s risk and vulnerability to HIV/AIDS. Comparable information on gender, men and HIV/AIDS is, however, very limited.

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