WHO urges focus on HIV patients' human rights on World AIDS Day University students hold red ribbons at a photo opportunity during an HIV/AIDS awareness rally on World AIDS day in Chengdu, Sichuan province more than a year ago on December 1, 2009.
Dedicated efforts across the globe have brought down the number of infectionsReuters/Stringer

Both Aids infections and tuberculosis are on the decline, according to a study by researchers at the University of Washington.

Worldwide, deaths from HIV/AIDS declined at a rate of 1.5% between 2000 and 2013, while tuberculosis deaths declined at a rate of 3.7%, said the report published in The Lancet medical journal.

The report shows 30 million people are currently infected with HIV. That's 18% fewer than what the United Nations reports – UNAIDS says 35 million people are infected with HIV globally, and that 36 million people have died from Aids-related illnesses since the pandemic began in the 1980s.

In 2013, 1.8 million people were newly diagnosed with HIV and 1.3 million died from it. That's down from a 2005 peak of 1.7 million deaths in 2005.

As for TB, 11.9 million people are infected globally, with 7.5 million new cases a year. TB kills 1.4 million people every year, the study found.

Dedicated efforts across the globe have been cited for the reduced numbers of infections. Researchers found that the expansion of interventions to prevent mother-to-child transmissions of HIV, anti-retroviral therapy programme and the promotion of condom use have helped in keeping HIV/AIDS under check.

While most forms of TB are curable with antibiotics, it takes time and treatment is costly. With HIV, a cure has been elusive, though new research has been throwing a few good results. So far, patients can only manage Aids using a cocktail of antiviral drugs to boost immunity.

In India alone, it is estimated that almost 500,500 people died of TB last year (not including those infected with HIV), making it the biggest killer among the three. India was far behind the rest of the world when it came to reducing prevalence of TB. The world prevalence of TB in those without HIV/AIDS in 2013 was 160.2 for every 100,000 people but in India, it was 275.3.

Though India's fight against HIV/AIDS is said to have made progress, the disease still killed 78,600.