AIDS Current Affairs

Government launches National Strategic Plan 2017-24 and Mission SAMPARK

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare launched the National Strategic Plan 2017-24 aimed at eradicating HIV/AIDS by 2030. It was launched on the occasion of World AIDS Day (1st December).

Mission SAMPARK was also launched to trace those who are Left to Follow Up and are to be brought under Antiretroviral therapy (ART) services.

Key Facts

The National Strategic Plan 2017-24 will pave a roadmap not only for achieving the target of 90:90:90 Strategy but also strive along with partners towards fast track strategy of ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

Mission SAMPARK will further aid to will help in fast-tracking the identification of all who were HIV positive and subsequently linking to ART programme. Presently, about 11.5 lakh People Living with HIV (PLHIVs) are taking free ART through 536 ART centres in the country. It is big challenge to trace those who are Left to Follow Up and needed to be brought under ART services.

90:90:90 Strategy

It is a new HIV treatment narrative of UNAIDS programme which has set targets of 90% of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status (90% diagnosed), 90% of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy (90% on HIV treatment) and 90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression (90% suppressed).

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Rajya Sabha passes HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2014

The Rajya Sabha has passed HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2014. The Bill seeks to safeguard the rights of people living with HIV and affected by HIV.

It aims to prevent social stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV (PLHIV). It also seeks to strengthen legal accountability and establish formal mechanisms for inquiring into complaints and redressing grievances to probe discrimination complaints against those who discriminate against PLHIV.

Salient Features of Bill
  • Prevention and control the spread of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). It prohibits discrimination against persons with HIV and AIDS.
  • No person will be compelled to disclose his HIV status except with his informed consent, and if required by a court order Establishments keeping records of information of PLHIV must adopt data protection measures.
  • Obligations on establishments to safeguard rights of persons living with HIV arid create mechanisms for redressing complaints.
  • Lists various grounds on which discrimination against HIV-positive persons and those living with them is prohibited.
  • These include the denial, discontinuation, termination or unfair treatment with regard to employment, educational establishments, health care services, renting property etc.
  • Prohibits, requirement for HIV testing as a pre-requisite for obtaining employment or accessing health care or education.
  • Prohibits any individual from publishing information or advocating feelings of hatred against HIV positive persons and PLHIV.
Background

There are approximately 21 lakh persons estimated to be living with HIV in India, the third highest number after South Africa and Nigeria. Currently, HIV is more prevalent in high-risk groups like female sex workers, homosexuals and drug addicts. The prevalence of HIV is decreasing over the last decade but percentage of PLHIV receiving Anti-Retroviral therapy (ART) treatment are merely 28.82% against global percentage of 41%.

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