HIV/AIDS was recognized as a global crisis by mid 1980s (Liskin, Blackbourn & Maier, 1986). By 1986, there were an estimated 100, 000 AIDS cases worldwide, and about 10 million cases of HlV infection (WHO, cited in Kiragu, 2001). Whereas projections at the time showed that the number of AIDS-related deaths would reach 1.7 million by 2006, 3 million people reportedly died of AIDS by 2001 (UNAIDS/WHO, 2001). HIV/AIDS has since spread precipitously throughout the world, ravaging the lives of millions of people, increasing health burdens and engendering very deleterious socio-economic consequences. ln 2000, the total number of deaths from AIDS globally was put at 22 million (UNAlDS, 2000), and over 40 million people were living with the virus. Around 25.8% of these people were in sub-Saharan Africa. Nigeria has about 3.5 million HIV infected persons, a figure that easily qualifies her as the third largest population of PLWHAS in the world, after India and South Africa.

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