World HIV day is the first global health day to be celebrated from the year 1988. World AIDS Day is observed on 1st December every year. It is one of the most recognized health day celebrated worldwide to show support to the people suffering from HIV and as a remembrance of those who passed away from it. On this day the achievements in the field of medical science.

AIDS day was initiated at the1988 World Summit of Ministers of Health on Programmes for AIDS Prevention. This year is the 30th anniversary and World AIDS day 2018 will be on 1st December, Saturday.

Why is world AIDS day important?

  • An average of 36.7 million people is surviving with AIDs worldwide in 2016
  • In 36.7 million people 21.7 million were accessing antiretroviral therapy.
  • The newly HIV infected people count is 1.8 million and 1 million deaths occurred due to AIDS-related illness in 2016.
  • Even though the HIV was identified in 1984, around 35 million have died due to this making it one of the deadliest diseases in history.
  • Today with the evolutions in medical science people infected with HIV can protect themselves but still many new cases are resurfacing which has become a challenge.
  • There is a need for educating people about this disease, how to protect themselves and not to discriminate the people affected from it, which is why world AIDS day is important.
  • World AIDS day is a day to remind the Government and public to raise funds, educate people and care for the HIV infected people.

What is HIV/ AIDS?

HIV is Human Immunodeficiency Virus that weakens the human immune system, the HIV patients are more prone to getting an infectious disease like cancer. The most advanced stage of this is Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS)

HIV symptoms

The symptoms defer stage wise and person to person, normal early stage symptoms are fever, headache, rashes etc. As it worsens the patient experiences weight loss, diarrhea and more. This may lead to serious diseases like tuberculosis, meningitis, and cancers.

How HIV is transmitted?

  • HIV can be transmitted through
  • Sexual contact with the infected person
  • HIV is transmitted from an infected mother to her child during pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding.
  • Using needles and syringe contaminated with HIV infected blood
  • Receiving organ transplant, blood infusion from HIV infected person

HIV in India

As per the 2015 report, there are 2.1 million HIV infected people in India. AIDS-related annual deaths have decreased by 54% and new HIV infection by 32% from the year 2007 to 2015 according to the National AIDS Control Programme.

National AIDS Control Programme: is a scheme 100% sponsored by Indian Government under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.  This is an initiative to reduce new HIV infection and to support and care for the HIV infected people.

Red Ribbon Express: It is an awareness program to educate people about HIV/ AIDS across the country traveling in a specified route.

World AIDS day activities

International AIDS day is an opportunity to show Unity with the HIV infected people and show our support. People around the world do this by wearing HIV symbolizing red ribbons. The ribbons are freely distributed by organizations.

Many funds raising and awareness events are organized around the world for world AIDS day celebration. Health camps and educative camps are also conducted on this day. Interactive competitions are held among the HIV patients to show the support. World AIDS day speech by dignitaries inspire people to fight against this deadly disease.  Similar activities are conducted for World AIDS day in India.

World AIDS day theme 2018 ‘Know Your Status’

UNAIDS is the division of UN dedicated for fighting AIDS. UNAIDS organized the World AIDS day campaign was since its creation and till 2004. Now World AIDS Campaign’s Global Steering Committee selects a World AIDS day theme to focus the worldwide celebration.

The UNAID World AIDS day 2018 theme is ‘Know your status’, it signifies that HIV testing is essential. Three people in four who are infected with HIV are tested and know their status.

Other Worlds AIDS day Themes

Year Theme
2008 Lead, Empower, Deliver
2009 Stop AIDS: Keep the Promise
2010 Universal Access and Human Rights
2011 Getting to Zero – Zero New HIV Infections. Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS-Related Deaths


2012 Getting to Zero
2013 Zero Discrimination
2014 Close the Gap
2015 On the fast track to end AIDS
2016 Hands up for #HIVPREVENTION
2017 My health, my right
2018 Know your status

 HIV new infection must be reduced but not by discriminating the people infected from it, Himalai IAS coaching wants to create this awareness on the world AIDS day as part of our India with world events.