Investment in healthcare makes a big difference; child deaths have been halved, HIV infections decreased by more than 40% and more than 6 million cases of malaria have been prevented. UN SDG 3 is a call to action to end the epidemics of AIDS, TB, malaria and other communicable diseases as well as to achieve universal health coverage and providing access to safe and effective medicines and vaccines for all by 203043.
Although the world has made incredible advances in science and medicine, there are still far too many who do not have access to even basic healthcare. Preventable diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS claim millions of lives every year. Illnesses like the common cold and diarrhea are easy to treat in the developed world but for those living in poverty, these conditions are often fatal.
- Globally, AIDS is the second most common cause of death among adolescents36
- Around 35 million people lives with HIV, of which 2.1 million are adolescents (2013)37
- There were 250 000 new HIV infections among adolescents in 2013, two thirds of which were among adolescent girls38
- There were 214 million cases of malaria globally, which led to 438,000 deaths39
- 90% of these deaths happened in Sub-Saharan African40
- 70% of deaths are children under the age of five41
- 63% of all deaths worldwide are caused by Non-communicable diseases such as cancers, chronic respiratory diseases, diabetes and heart diseases.42