In relation to the possibility of ending HIV infection or AIDS, there are lights and shadows, but certainly more lights than shadows.
Although there is still no effective vaccine against AIDS, one reason for optimism is the effectiveness of anti-retroviral therapy in preventing HIV infection and in the treatment of AIDS patients, which means that this disease has gone from being a fatal disease to a chronic illness.
Deaths due to AIDS reached their peak in the United States in 1995, and globally in 2005. At present, there are more living HIV-infected people that at any previous time, although there are also fewer new infections.
Furthermore, anti-retroviral therapy is reaching many more people; of the 34.2 million people living with HIV in 2011, around 8 million have access to anti-retroviral therapy, 20% more than in 2010.
However, one reason for pessimism is the difficulty in providing this therapy to all persons who need it, even in developed countries.
Another problem is that many HIV-infected people are unaware that they have the virus. Thus, of the 1.1 million HIV-positive people in the United States, 82% do not know that they are infected; 33% receive anti-retroviral therapy and only 25% manage to eliminate the virus (JAMA Inter Med, 173; 11-12, 2013).