World AIDS Day

Wednesday, December 1, 2010 - 4:59pm

Events across the country and around the world mark World AIDS Day.

Three decades after AIDS was discovered the deadly disease remains a pandemic threat.

According to a new United Nations report, 33 million people have AIDS worldwide.

On World Aids Day Wednesday a huge red ribbon was on display outside the White House.

It came with a pledge from the Obama administration to combat aids and raise awareness.

In the U.S. more than one million are living with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

Along with education, routine testing and prevention remain the focus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows nearly 83 million Americans have been tested for the AIDS virus.

In the medical world new drugs offer hope for many.

A two-year trial in South Africa found women who used a gel with anti-AIDS medication cut the infection rate of HIV by 39 percent, and a recent study showed when the once-a day pill Truvada is taken faithfully it can cut the risk of HIV infection for gay men as much as 70 percent.

"This is a landmark study and significant advance in our research in preventing hiv from spreading," says the Cleveland Clinic's Dr. Umi Abbas.

Life-saving tools and progress but health experts say more research, funding and awareness are needed to fight this deadly and persistent disease.

The United Nations estimates the number of people living in Eastern Europe and Central Asia with HIV has tripled in the last decade.

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