End inequalities. End AIDS
Every year, December 1 is celebrated as the World AIDS Day: a day made to raise awareness about HIV and the evolving AIDS epidemic. Since the beginning of the epidemic in 1988, 79.3 million people have become infected with HIV, as per UNAIDS. According to World health organisation, HIV has claimed over 36.3 million lives, and still, it persists as a major global public health issue.
The theme of World AIDS Day 2021 is “End inequalities. End AIDS”.
The objective of PAHO/UNAIDS joint campaign theme “End inequalities. End AIDS” is to convey about the significance of equitable approach to health services and the importance of reinforcing actions at the primary health care level, with special prominence on HIV combination prevention and treatment services, as well as encouraging work with societies to reach those people who are more prone to HIV and other pandemics.
The campaign calls for crucial action to provide vital prevention against AIDS and treatment services that the COVID-19 pandemic and its response have weakened in countries, but the pandemic has also left useful lessons. For example, dispensing several months’ medication at one time, implementing HIV self-testing, and using telemedicine have proven to be effective strategies that can be incorporated into normal routines.
WHY HIV EPIDEMIC IS NOT OVER YET?
MODES OF TRANSMISSION
HOW IT IS DIAGNOSED?
SCREENING TEST (ANTIBODY
- Rapid tests/Simple test(takes<30min)
- ELISA (2-3 hours)
SUPPLEMENTARY TESTS (ANTIBODY DETECTION)
- Western blot
- Immuno fluorescence assay
- Radio immuno precipitation assay
- Line immunoassay
- P24 antigen capture test
- Viral culture-by co-cultivation technique
- HIV RNA
- HIV-DNA detection-pediatric HIV
- Low CD4 count
- Altered CD4:CD8 T cell ratio
HIV tests are available free and confidentially from:
- Sexual health clinics
- HIV testing centers – ICTC (Integrated Counseling & Testing Center )
- GP practices
- Secondary care services
- In Antenatal clinic if pregnant
HOW CAN AIDS BE TREATED ?
Anti-retro viral therapy (ART): Approved drugs are used for the treatment.
- NRTIs: Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors
Ex: Zidovudine, Lamivudine
- NNRTIs: Non -nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors
Ex: Nevirapine, Efavirenz
- PIs: Protease Inhibitors
Ex: Ritonavir, Lopinavir
- NtRTI: Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors
There are 2.1 million people living with HIV in India, which has the third largest HIV epidemic in the world. During an event in New Delhi, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, announced a new test-and-treat policy that commits to providing access to HIV treatment for everyone living with HIV in the country. Prior to the change in policy, people living with HIV could only access antiretroviral medicine for free if their CD4 cells had decreased to less than 500 cells/mm3.
THE EFFECTS OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
RAY OF HOPE FOR AIDS CURE
Researchers and scientists believe that the world will find a cure for HIV, but there are different pathways for a cure such as gene editing, immune modulation & stem cell transplants.
AIDS to a certain extent is not preventable but it can be cured by ART and early diagnosis leaving behind all the social stigma and fear.
The government also funds AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP), to help pay for HIV drugs for people who might not be able to afford them otherwise.
The whole frank reality is AIDS can happen in anyone of us, unless and until it is diagnosed early and prevented by taking medications for surviving long lives. NACO (National Aids Control Organisation) launched by Government of India is built on a foundation of care and support, and is devoted to systematically counterfeit diplomatic responses for combating HIV/AIDS situation in India.
O- Opportunistic infection
P- Prevention of A-APARTHEID
Report by ,
Mrs. Neetha Umesh
Lecturer , MVMCAHS