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AIDS medicines will soon be delivered at doorsteps in Manipur, says CM

He said a substantial number of PLHIV do not have access to ART as they hesitate to go to hospitals or ART centres fearing social stigma.

Written by Jimmy Leivon | Imphal |
December 1, 2021 10:44:53 pm
Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh. (File)

Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh announced to start a doorstep delivery service of Anti-Retroviral Treatment (ART) medicine for people living with HIV (PLHIV) to reduce social stigma.

The Chief Minister said this during the World AIDS Day at the 1st Manipur Rifles parade ground Wednesday. This year’s theme is ‘End inequalities. End AIDS, End pandemics’.

He said a substantial number of PLHIV do not have access to ART as they hesitate to go to hospitals or ART centres fearing social stigma. Keeping this in mind, the Chief Minister said from December onwards all HIV patients will get ART medicine home delivered.

According to the Manipur State Aids Control Society (MACS), the HIV prevalence among the adult population had reached 3.1 per cent during 1999 but it has now declined to 1.18 per cent. Nevertheless, MACS said retention at ART treatment needs to be higher as presently in Manipur, only 57 per cent of PLHIV are continuing their ART treatment.

While the HIV prevalence among adults stands at 1.18 per cent, the number is far above the national average of 0.22 percent, said MACS. It stressed the need to expand counselling and testing and adopt harm-reduction interventions willingly and widely, while avoiding any stigma.

Singh said that with the initiatives from various non-governmental organisations the infection rate in the state has reduced substantially. He expressed his confidence that with initiatives from the public and NGOs, HIV will be eradicated from the state.

As per an MACS data, the number of PLHIV who had ever initiated ART is 21,093 as of September 2021. Out of which, 10,873 are adult males, 8,716 adult females, 129 transgenders, 598 male children and 577 girl children. Against this backdrop, the PLHIV who are alive and on ART is 13,456 as of September 2021. Out of which, 6,067 are adult males, 6,102 are adult females, 94 transgenders, 427 male children and 446 female children.

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