Israel's largest medical centers were to light up their buildings in red on Sunday night to mark World AIDS Day, to promote the global struggle against AIDS and HIV, in collaboration with the Organization for Life with HIV and Gilead Sciences Inc.
The medical centers - Sourasky in Tel Aviv, Sheba in Tel Hashomer, Hadassah in Ein Kerem and Rambam in Haifa – were all to have their main facilities illuminated in red to honor the day.
A Health Ministry report published Sunday showed a rise in AIDS and HIV patients in Israel in 2018, for the second consecutive year.
As of 2018, there were some 7,500 people living in Israel with HIV or AIDS, with 427 new cases reported that year.
The World Health Organization (WHO) and other organizations including Israel's Health Ministry have joined the UN's “90-90-90” program to eradicate AIDS.
The program's goals are to have 90% of all HIV carriers in the world diagnosed, 90% of the carriers receive drug treatment and 90% of all carriers reach undetectable status.
The chairman of the Organization for Life with HIV notes that, “an undetectable AIDS carrier cannot infect anyone with the AIDS virus, can have sex without a condom with a single partner and can bring healthy children into the world.”
According to a recent report by the United Nations, there were some 38 million people living with HIV in 2018.
The UN General Assembly is urging countries across the world to ensure that at least 90% of people living with AIDS receive comprehensive prevention services by next year.
World AIDS Day was launched 31 years ago, the first-ever global health day.