Globally, HIV/AIDS is the leading cause of death among women of reproductive age.
At the end of 2009 it was estimated that out of the 34 million adults worldwide living with HIV and AIDS, slightly more than half are women. Women are at a greater risk of heterosexual transmission of HIV and are twice as likely to become infected with HIV through unprotected heterosexual intercourse than men. In many countries women are less likely to be able to negotiate condom use and are more likely to be subjected to non-consensual sex.
Only 20 percent of young women aged 15 to 24 can correctly identify ways of preventing HIV transmission and reject major misconceptions about HIV transmission. In low- and middle-income countries, only one-third of pregnant women are currently offered services to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV.