By the end of 2017, there were an estimated 21.4 lakh people living with HIV (PLHIV) in India. The adult (15-49 years) HIV prevalence was 0.22%. As many as 11.81 lakh people are on anti-retroviral treatment in the country, according to the HIV estimations 2017 report released recently by National AIDS Control Organisation and ICMR-National Institute of Medical Statistics, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India recently.
December 1 marks the 30th anniversary of World AIDS Day, and this year’s theme is ‘know your status’. Despite tremendous progress, the AIDS epidemic is not yet over, Indian Council of Medical Research officials said. The latest update on the status of AIDS from 1981 to 2017 in 35 states and UTs in India has said that there is an overall decline in new HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths in India. There were 87,590 new HIV infections and 69,110 AIDS-related deaths in 2017, according to the report.
While the new infections are declining nationally, there are inter-state variations. In five states —- Arunachal Pradesh (65%), Assam (37%), Mizoram (18%), Meghalaya (10%) and Uttarakhand (4%) —- new infections increased in 2017 in comparison to 2010. The HIV incidence among general population is low across states, except for a few, it is much higher among High Risk Groups.
“There is no room for complacency as according to the report in some states HIV infections are on the rise. The last mile is always difficult but these trends need to be carefully monitored,” Dr R R Gangakhedkar, Head, Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases, ICMR told The Indian Express.