Of a total estimated HIV population of 1.25 lakh people in Uttar Pradesh, more than 80% are yet to receive treatment. This figure accounts for only 25,278 people getting free anti-retroviral therapy (ART) treatment, according to data from the UP State AIDS Control Society.
In a recent seminar organised by the department of microbiology of Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, AIDS Society of India, People’s Health Organisation and Citizen News Service, the issue came under the spotlight. It was further implied at the event that the stigma and discrimination associated with HIV and AIDS has led to the inflation on this situation. There is an urgent need to step up the efforts to burst the myth associated with the disease.
“The situation is scary and the government must do everything possible to test and treat the untapped patients,” said Dr Ishwar Gilada, president AIDS Society of India and one of the first physicians in the country to have worked on the issue, as reported by TOI.
“UPSACS data shows that 77,125 patients had registered with them at some point of time. I wonder how and why the track of those patients was lost,” he told reporters.
Head of the microbiology department at SGPGIS Dr Tapan Dhole is also implied to have highlighted the need for handling the situation of providing treatment for co-morbidities related to HIV. “TB is just one of the many problems PLHIV face,” he said.