Speech to the 16th Meeting of the UNAIDS Programme, Coordinating Board, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 14 December 2004
This is the first time the Programme Coordinating Board has met in the Caribbean – and it is highly appropriate that it does so now. While much of the world’s attention has turned to the burgeoning epidemics in India and China, the Caribbean, with an estimated HIV adult prevalence rate of 2.3%, has the second highest prevalence rates of HIV infection behind sub -Saharan Africa, and HIV infections continue to increase. Just two weeks ago, UNAIDS and WHO released the latest figures which indicate that among adults aged 15 to 44, AIDS has become the leading cause of death in the Caribbean. There is also evidence to suggest that these rates of prevalence are worsening in a majority of Caribbean countries.