Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date



This working paper reviews the evolution of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and provides estimates of past trends and future projections of AIDS mortality indicators, including numbers of AIDS deaths, the proportion of all deaths that are due to AIDS, and life expectancy. A cumulative total of 24 million people have died from AIDS between 1980 and 2007, and by 2030 this total is projected to reach 75 million. Despite the rapid spread of this new disease during the 1980s and 1990s, the epidemic has reached a major turning point in recent years as the rate of new infections peaked and began a decline. Worldwide, the proportion of all deaths caused by AIDS reached 3.9 percent in 2004; this proportion varies widely from a high of 15 percent in sub-Saharan Africa to around one percent in Asia and other regions. In the future, the number of AIDS deaths and the proportion of deaths due to AIDS are projected to remain approximately at their current levels.