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According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary (n.d.), epidemic is the occurrence of infectious disease that spreads very quickly and affects a significant number of people. As for the HIV in the US, the number of infected people has remained relatively stable over the last decade. Thus, it cannot be called an epidemic as there is no rapid growth in the number of infected people. However, the problem still exists, and it is more severe than it is usually believed to be. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2014) states that there are more than 1.1 million individuals in the US having HIV. Moreover, approximately 50.000 people become HIV-infected every year (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014). Another disturbing fact is that half of the infected people do not know about their problem. The progress in medicine and advanced treatment helped to reduce the new infections growth rate, which was around 130.000 in the ninetieth. Nevertheless, there are some factors, which may increase the possibility of infected people growth. For example, the biggest number of infected people appears among men who have sex with men, so, considering the fact that homosexual relationships are getting more common and popular, there is a chance that HIV will spread again. Thus, the government should not stop taking actions for HIV and AIDS prevention and treatment as a decrease in growt may have a temporary effect.
According to the World Health Organization (2014), there were 35 million people living with HIV in 2013. The most crucial situation is in low-income countries, like Africa, South Asia and South America. The majority of HIV-infected people live in Africa (around 25 million), where the epidemic is severe and requires large investments and hard work to cure.
Global education of people, especially young ones, is important for preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS. It is needed to tell them about the causes, symptoms, and preventive measures of the illness. Many people think that it is wrong to talk to youth about sex and drugs because it will encourage them to do the opposite. However, these thoughts are based on moral and religious views without any evidences, and they restrict AIDS education globally (Avert, n.d.). Young people in the age till 24 years constitute one-third of infected people.
In 2012, around 2 million people became infected, however, in early 2000s this number exceeded 3 million (UNAIDS, n.d.). The reduction in one million of infected people can be explained by global awareness of this illness and preventive measures in particular. It is a real fact that reflects hard work and high results of education regarding this disease. However, 2 million of new infecttions yearly states that a lot of work should be done. Education about HIV/AIDS should be the priority of every government. Many countries have already implemented educational programs. Kenya shows impressive results in a reduction of risky behavior due to AIDS education at school and compulsory one-week lesson in primary and secondary school. India launched the Adolescent Education Programme (AEP) aimed to train teachers to educate young people in and out of school regarding prevention of HIV, proper behavior and discrimination of HIV-infected people. As a result, around 300 thousand teachers were trained; however this initiative was not properly supported by the government.
HIV education should be implemented in every country through mandatory classes and lectures. Moreover, parents should inform their children about proper sexual behavior, preventing measures and possible consequences of taking drugs. Global education can be achieved through mass media campaigns addressing preventive measures and equality of people being affected by virus. However, the main weapon in combat against HIV is awareness about the disease and recognition of the problem. The HIV/AIDS epidemic still poses a threat to life of people all over the world. Thus, it is important for every government to put efforts to the HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment to avoid its expansion and evolution.