To date, 40 million people have been infected by the HIV/AIDS virus. Thanks to antiretroviral therapy, the virus is no longer a death sentence for patients. Antiretroviral drugs help combat the virus and enable people to live longer, healthier lives without their immune system rapidly declining. But the high cost of treatment makes it prohibitive for many patients, particularly in developing countries, who are unable to pay for it.

At the end of 2013, we had 341,645 HIV patients registered under our care and 325,500 patients on first-line antiretroviral treatment.

 

Story from the field

Winter Musonda, patient and MSF HIV/AIDS counselor, Kapiri M'Posi, Zambia

I once had a large family, with seven brothers and one sister. But I lost them all to AIDS. I had tuberculosis four times, and meningitis; I suffered a lot. My weight was down to 49 kilos. I took an HIV test and found that I was HIV-positive. MSF began an antiretroviral treatment program in Zambia, and I was lucky because I was among the first to have access to free antiretroviral drugs. Within a few months, I regained my strength.