Within four years, death rates for people with HIV in developed countries had dropped by 84%. Now, if treatment is started early, these medicines can reduce the level of the HIV virus in the body to undetectable levels and life expectancy can be restored to normal.
Recent research also suggests that if someone with HIV has an undetectable viral load – the goal for HAART treatment – then it massively reduces (perhaps even stops) the risk of passing on HIV. The studies confirming this hypothesis are ongoing.
What is more, there is new hope that if ARV treatment can be started early and widely enough, then the spread of HIV can be dramatically reduced.