World AIDS Day 2018: Know your status

The 1st of December is World AIDS Day, a global health initiative that encourages the international community “to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness.” (Worldaidsday.org) And it’s vital that it does because since the beginning of the global HIV/AIDS crisis, a staggering 77.3 million people have been infected with the disease and 35.4 million have died as a result of AIDS-related illnesses.

While huge strides have been made in the war against HIV/AIDS, the latest UNAIDS report, issued on 18 July this year and entitled Miles to go–closing gaps, breaking barriers, righting injustices, warns that the global community has fallen significantly behind in its quest to reach fewer than 500 000 AIDS-related deaths by 2020.

As Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of the agency, explains, “We are sounding the alarm. Entire regions are falling behind, the huge gains we made for children are not being sustained, women are still most affected, resources are still not matching political commitments and key populations continue to be ignored. All these elements are halting progress and urgently need to be addressed head-on.”

According to a UNAIDS fact sheet released ahead of World AIDS Day, and based on 2017 statistics:

•  36.9 million people are living with HIV while approximately 9.4 million people are unaware that they have been infected.
•   21.7 million people are accessing antiretroviral therapy.
•  1.8 million people became newly infected with HIV.
•  940 000 people died as a result of AIDS-related illnesses.
•  In sub-Saharan Africa, three in four new infections among adolescents aged 15–19 years are in girls.

This year, World AIDS Day commemorates 30 years of global HIV/AIDS action and awareness with the theme ‘Know your status’. Locally, the theme is ‘Cheka Impilo. Know Your Status’. This powerful message is a call to action to citizens across the world to take responsibility for their health and is key to halting the spread of the disease and ensuring that those living with HIV are able to manage it as effectively as possible with antiretroviral treatment.

Knowing your status is also important if you’re planning to take out any type of cover, whether it be life cover, serious illness cover, disability cover or salary protection, as it affects the type of cover you qualify for.

If you’ve ever looked into or applied for cover, chances are you’ll already know that you’re required to have an HIV test. When it comes to cover from Standard Bank's direct life insurance services, if your test results are non-reactive, you’ll qualify for primary cover. If you do not have the test, or if you do and your results are reactive, you’ll qualify for secondary cover.

Here’s a look at what that means.

Life Cover

• Primary cover: Your chosen beneficiaries will receive a once-off lump sum payout if you die as a result of illness or injury.
• Secondary cover: Your chosen beneficiaries will receive a once-off lump sum payout if you die as a result of an injury from an accident. They will not be paid out if you die as a result of a disease or health problem.

Disability Cover

• Primary cover: You’ll receive a once-off lump sum payment if you become totally and permanently disabled due to illness or injury and are unable to earn a living.
• Secondary cover: You’ll receive a once-off lump sum payment if you become totally and permanently disabled due to an injury from an accident and you are unable to earn a living. You will not be paid out if you become disabled as a result of a disease or other health issues.

Serious Illness Cover

• Primary cover: You’ll be paid a once-off lump sum if you’re diagnosed with cancer, have a heart attack or a stroke or undergo open heart surgery.
• Secondary cover: You’ll be paid out a once-off lump sum if you are diagnosed with cancer. You will not be covered for a stroke, heart attack or open heart surgery.

Salary Protection

• Primary cover: You’ll be paid a percentage of your salary in regular monthly payouts if you’re unable to work due to illness or injury.
• Secondary cover: You’ll be paid a percentage of your salary in regular monthly payouts if you’re unable to work due to an injury from an accident. You will not be paid out if you are unable to work as a result of a disease or illness.

If you’d like to find out more about cover from Standard Bank's direct life insurance services, get a quote or request that a customer service agent call you back.

Sources
gov.za
unaids.org
worldaidsday.org

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