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Unless more individuals voluntarily seek HIV testing, the cost of treating the disease could come close to $1 trillion over the course of the next 20 years, according to a new report from the Results for Development Institute.
Their findings, which were published in the Lancet, indicated that of global HIV testing and treatment programs could cost governments anywhere from $400 billion to $700 billion dollars by 2030.
Researchers said that the problem is complicated by the difficult economic times being faced around the world. Given the high price tag of HIV programs, many governments may be reluctant to provide them with the funding they need.
"One of the surprising things we found was that the price tag [to fund HIV programs] could vary so significantly," said study author Robert Hecht, managing director of Results for Development. "It really shows you that countries have very different choices to make about how they scale up [HIV prevention and treatment] and the pace at which they do it."
Unless more money is directed to HIV testing and treatment programs, the group estimates that the number of worldwide infections could increase by more than 1 million over the course of the next 20 years.
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