Since the beginning of the HIV epidemic, the Region of the Americas has contributed with a public health and human rights approach to the global response to HIV. In September 2016, Member States of the Pan American Health Organization approved the Plan of Action for the Prevention and Control of HIV and Sexually Transmitted Infections 2016 -2021. This Plan aims to promote an accelerated, focused, more effective, innovative and sustainable response, paving the way towards the goal of ending the epidemics of AIDS and STIs as public health problems in the Region of the Americas by 2030.

Key facts
  • The number of new HIV infections in Latin America is estimated to have increased 21% since 2010, with approximately 120,000 new infection in 2019. The Caribbean had a reduction of 29% from 2010 to 2019, down from an estimated 18.000 new cases to 13.000 per year.
  • The HIV epidemic in the Region disproportionally affects certain sub-population (key populations), including gay men and other men who have sex with men (MSM) transgender women, and female sex workers. In Latin America, these three key populations account for approximately half of the new infections in 2019, and 37% in the Caribbean.
  • In 2019, an estimated 3.7 milllion people with HIV in the Americas, 2.1 million in Latin America, and 330 thousand in the Caribbean.
  • In Latin America, the number of people dying of AIDS-related death have decreased from 41000 in 2010 to 37 thousand in 2019, while the Caribbean decreased from 11 thousand to 6,900 in the same period.
  • It is estimated that 23% of people with HIV in Latin America and in the Caribbean are unaware of their infection, and approximately one third are diagnosed late, with advanced immunodeficiency (under 200 CD4 per mm3 of blood).
  • Approximately 1.3 million people living with HIV were receiving antiretroviral treatment (ART) in Latin America and 210 thousand in the Caribbean by the end of 2019, accounting for 60% ART coverage among all persons estimated to be living with HIV in Latin America and 63% in the Caribbean.
  • WHO: Key facts
PAHO Response

The 69th World Health Assembly endorsed the Global Health Sector Strategy on HIV for 2016-2021. The strategy includes five strategic directions that guide priority actions by countries and by WHO over the next six years.

The strategic directions are:

  • Information for focused action (know your epidemic and response).
  • Interventions for impact (covering the range of services needed).
  • Delivering for equity (covering the populations in need of services).
  • Financing for sustainability (covering the costs of services).
  • Innovation for acceleration (looking towards the future).

In the Americas, countries have also endorsed the Plan of Action for the Prevention and Control of HIV and Sexually Transmitted Infections 2016-2021 to help accelerate the progress towards the end of AIDS and STI epidemics as public health problems by 2030 in the Region of the Americas. The goals of the regional Plan of Action are to reduce the incidence of new HIV infections, AIDS-related mortality, and STI-related complications. The Plan also integrates the goals of the previous Regional Strategy and Plan of Action for the Elimination of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV and Congenital Syphilis, reducing the rate of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and congenital syphilis to elimination levels.