Anyone infected with HIV should begin antiretroviral treatment as soon after diagnosis as possible, WHO announced on Wednesday. With its "treat-all" recommendation, WHO removes all limitations on eligibility for antiretroviral therapy (ART) among people living with HIV; all populations and age groups are now eligible for treatment.
The expanded use of antiretroviral treatment is supported by recent findings from clinical trials confirming that early use of ART keeps people living with HIV alive, healthier and reduces the risk of transmitting the virus to partners. WHO now also recommends that people at "substantial" risk of HIV should be offered preventive antiretroviral treatment.
I must say this sounds like the best health news this year. When I was a medical student, I and some colleagues argued that starting retroviral therapy immediately after diagnosis was better than delaying treatment till the patient's CD4 count started falling but were told it was to prevent the development of drug resistance.
Now the HIV treatment guidelines have been overturned, cheers to better health and immune levels for all and goodbye to cramming treatment guidelines too!