(De Ware Tijd) PARAMARIBO – The mortality rate among HIV infected people in Suriname is dropping. Recent statistics dating back to 2009 prove this. In 2009, 106 persons died through HIV infection, while in 2004 that number was 152. The majority of the deceased are men. The same data shows that the use of medication against HIV has increased. In 2009, 973 persons used HIV inhibitors, a 4.5 times larger number than in 2004. 2010 saw an increase in inhibitors users to 1,083. The international theme for World Aids Day this year is ‘Go for zero, focusing on men’. The focus is on men, since their group is comparatively greater than women. Global statistics show that a larger percentage of men die as a result of HIV infection. Surinamese men also rarely make use of health care. They rarely go to the doctor or go when it is already too late. Consequently, diseases are diagnosed too late, despite the fact that it is possible to go on living normally with this chronic disease should one start treatment on time. The National AIDS Program of Suriname (NAP) has therefore decided to focus this year on men and boys.
Fewer men in Suriname allow themselves to be tested for HIV infection. More men than women become sick or eventually die due to HIV infection because they delay consulting a doctor until they have become very ill. In his statement to mark World AIDS Day, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon states that after forty years, the end is in sight of the fight against AIDS. The number of new HIV infections globally has dropped with more than 20 percent since 1997. Treatment has averted death for 2.5 million people that would normally die of AIDS. The UN’s objectives are to reduce the number of HIV infections through sexual transfer by half by the year 2015, prevent new infections in children and to bring treatment to 15 million people living with AIDS.