500 days: Make them count

By Chip Lyons | July 31, 2014

A mother and a child in the waiting room of an under-five clinic in Malawi.

James Pursey / EGPAF-Malawi

August 18, 2014 marks the 500 day milestone until the target date to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). How do we make them count? In this blog, originally published on Devex.com, Chip Lyons, EGPAF president and CEO explains why we must make women and children in the fight against HIV a global priority to keep up MDG momentum and achieve a world where no child dies of AIDS. 

Five hundred days sounds like a long time, but compared with 15 years, it is the blink of an eye. And in fewer than 500 days we will reach Dec. 31, 2015, the target date of the Millennium Development Goals. It is a testament to the deceptive velocity of time that we so quickly find ourselves at the doorstep of that date adopted by the international community in 2000.

Improvements in the quality of human life around the world since 2000 have been unprecedented — both in terms of scale and pace.

On the front lines of the fight against HIV and AIDS, we have seen new infections fall 38 percent since 2001 and AIDS-related deaths plummet 35 percent from their peak in 2005. As of 2013, almost 13 million people living with HIV have access to antiretroviral therapy. Perhaps most encouragingly, new pediatric HIV infections have declined 58 percent since the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation was founded more than 25 years ago, which means we are zeroing in on our goal of an AIDS-free generation.

Read the full article, 500 Days: Make Them Count, on Devex.com