Paris — Swaziland, which bears the world’s heaviest HIV burden, has almost halved the rate of new infections in five years by boosting access to virus-suppressing drugs, researchers said on Monday. The country — where one in three adults is infected with the AIDS-causing virus — has vastly expanded public programmes to test people for HIV infection and put them on life-saving anti-retroviral treatment (ART). "The rate of new HIV infections has been reduced by half," Velephi Okello of the Swazi health ministry told journalists at an HIV science conference in Paris. "Remarkable progress has been made ... in controlling the HIV epidemic." In 2011, 31% of adults (aged 18-49) out of a total country population of just over 1.2-million were infected with HIV, according to government data. This made Swaziland the country with the highest national rate of new infections, said the authors of the new study, as well as the highest proportion of people living with HIV. The latest data, based on ...

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