Since 1983 over 67,000 Colombians have been diagnosed with AIDS, the country reported on World AIDS Day.
In 2009, 4,960 new HIV cases and 1,281 people with AIDS were registered and 539 Colombians died of the disease, reported Caracol Radio.
According to a recent report provided by the Ministry of Social Protetion for the U.N. General Assembly Special Sesscion (UNGASS), the HIV infections yearly increase by 0.8 percent which the Colombian government attempts to control through the “National Response Plan 2008-2011”.
The response plan educates Colombians on the dangers of HIV/AIDS and the ways infections can be prevented to control the disease by 2012.
The majority of HIV/AIDS related deaths are caused by a lack of care or a late diagnosis, the report indicates.
“The main challenges facing the country are to increase access to diagnosis, improve the condition of monitoring and evaluation to verify the coverage of pregnant women’s care and identify cases for inclusion as beneficiaries for the Comprehensive HIV/AIDS Care,” the Ministry of Social Protection indicated.
Martha Lucia Rubio, advisor of the Population Fund for the U.N. said that young people between 15 and 34 years are among the most affected of which 70 percent are men.
The groups most affected by AIDS are homosexual men, drug users and sex workers, director of the National Institute of Health Juan Gonzalo Lopez explained.
Displaced people and victims of conflict zones are also higher at risk to contract the disease.