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Global HIV/AIDS conference coming to Vancouver

DH Vancouver Staff Jul 17, 2015 8:32 am

On Sunday, July 19 through Wednesday, July 22, more than 6,000 HIV/AIDS experts will be in Vancouver for the 8th annual International AIDS Society (IAS) conference on HIV pathogenesis, treatment and prevention.

The conference, which is the largest HIV/AIDS conference in the world, will be welcomed by UBC and the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS.

The last time it was held in Vancouver was in 1996, when nearly one B.C. resident was dying from AIDS every day – now, with modern antiretroviral drugs and other treatments, life expectancies are nearly on par with non-infected people.

Last year, St. Paul’s Hospital even repurposed their AIDS ward due to a sharp diminish in provincial AIDS cases.

Since 1994, the number of reported HIV cases has dropped by 65%, while the number of AIDS cases have dropped by 88%.

“We are at a turning point and the end of AIDS could happen during my lifetime,” said Dr. Julio Montaner, a professor of Medicine and Director of the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS.

UNAIDS announced a goal at the last conference that by 2020, 90% of people will be aware of their HIV status, 90% of people living with the disease will be on antiretroviral medication, and 90% of those on medication will have undetectable viral loads.

“The 90-90-90 goals put us on track, but leaders from around the world must invest in treatment for those living with HIV. With the IAS Conference in Vancouver, it is a time to honour the important progress made to date and call to light the need for continued vigilance,” Montaner added.

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DH Vancouver Staff
Daily Hive is the evolution of Vancity Buzz, established in Vancouver in 2008. In 2016, the publication rebranded and opened newsrooms in Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal. Send story tips to [email protected]

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