Udupi, Dec 02, 2019: AIDS and HIV cases have declined in Udupi district thanks to the awareness programmes that were organised. Measures have been taken to ensure that no child is infected with HIV from HIV-infected mothers by the health department. Accordingly, in the last three years, none of the children born to HIV-infected mothers are infected with HIV in the district.
In 2018-19, the HIV and AIDS cases detected among general clients is 0.55% while it was 0.03% among pregnant women. In 2008-09, it was 7.90% among general clients while it was 0.54 % among pregnant women.
According to National Health Family Survey (NHFS), about 98% of the people in Udupi district are aware of how HIV spreads, said District AIDS Control Officer Dr Chidananda Sanju.
The HIV positive persons (eligible) could avail themselves of free Anti Retroviral Treatment at the District Government Hospital here and at the ART Centre at the Taluk Government Hospital in Kundapur. Stopping the treatment in between results in faster spreading of the disease. The patients are undergoing the treatment effectively in Udupi, said Dr Sanju.
All those pregnant women who visit Government hospitals and PHCs for regular check-up will have to undergo mandatory HIV test. To ensure that the HIV-affected people need not run from one department to another seeking facilities from the government, a single window system has been created to collect the applications at ART centres and submit it to the department concerned for persual.
Fifty per cent concession passes have been distributed for the AIDS and HIV victims in private buses in Udupi district. A total of 670 persons have availed the passes in Udupi district. Infected children are distributed with protein powder and vitamin tablets free of charge, said the officer.
The officer said that 35 Red Ribbons have been started in degree and nursing colleges in the district to create awareness on HIV and AIDS.
There are 12 Integrated Counselling and Testing Centre (ICTC) centres in Udupi district, where patients are counselled by the counselors. Further, HIV screening is carried out in 64 PHCs, he added. This was an encouraging projection on ’AIDS DAY’ December 1.