AIDS and HIV: Prevention and treatment of the disease
A press conference was held today in the capital within the framework of the World AIDS Campaign, which is being held in the country from November 15 to 25. At the event, the director of the AIDS Center Sabit Abdraimov told about the activities carried out during the decade and the current situation with AIDS in our city. More in the material of Strategy2050.kz correspondent.
The fight against AIDS around the world
Sabit Abdraimov, Director of the AIDS Center, participated in the UNAIDS global campaign “Eliminating Inequality. Stopping AIDS. Stopping the pandemic “was suggested. He also said that every year on December 1, the world community, including the World Health Organization, the United Nations, non-governmental organizations and governments, regularly celebrates HIV / AIDS Day to promote the prevention, testing, treatment and care of citizens. He said that he would make efforts to overcome the problems together.
“Every effort will be made to combat the AIDS epidemic. Today is World AIDS Day, reminding that the fight against HIV is not over yet. In this regard, I would like to emphasize the importance of eliminating stigma and discrimination against the population and improving the quality of life of people living with HIV, “said Sabit Abdraimov.
According to him, within ten days of the campaign, activities aimed at informing the population of the capital, especially youth, strengthening interdepartmental cooperation, increasing the role of non-governmental organizations and eliminating discrimination were held. In particular, for the first time an online concert of the Eurasian Symphony Orchestra of the Kazakh National University of Arts dedicated to World AIDS Day was held live. He also said that there was a challenge on social networks with the participation of non-governmental organizations and health workers with the hashtag #Uslyshatkazhdogo #EveryoneUnderstanding #.
A number of events were organized for university and college students, high school students – forums, debates, games-quizzes, actions for students with rapid HIV testing and charity events for patients in need of social support.
“285 people voluntarily underwent rapid testing for HIV (oral fluid) or capillary blood (ie finger blood). The more HIV tests there are, the more cases there are. In other words, 277 new cases of HIV have been detected over the past ten months. Of these, 197 are men and 80 are women, ”said the director of the AIDS Center.
According to Sabit Abdraimov, depending on the population, all regions of the country are divided into 3 groups depending on the level of HIV prevalence. They are high, medium and low. In particular, the city of Nur-Sultan, as a city with a population of more than 1 million, is included in the first group – the city with the highest morbidity. It also tests medical organizations, non – governmental organizations, and the Department of Corrections. As a result of targeted comprehensive work with the participation of the population of the city, the coverage of the population with HIV testing has increased.
Results of HIV testing
“This year, 276,699 HIV tests have been conducted. This is 26.3% higher than last year, “Sabit Abdraimov said.
In his speech, he noted the main reasons for the increase in testing. In particular, the removal of quarantine restrictions, the resumption of admission to clinics, scheduled hospitalization, the introduction of mandatory screening of sexual partners of pregnant women in accordance with the new requirements of the regulations, the increase in epidemiological and clinical examinations. He also said that in order to assess the prevalence of HIV infection, according to the WHO, it is necessary to test at least 10% of the population at the stage of concentrated HIV infection. According to the results of testing, the detection of HIV has significantly improved.
“Compared to the period of 2020, 203 cases, in 10 months of 2021 in the city of Nur-Sultan HIV increased by 74 cases. (277 cases in total). As a result of timely testing of different groups of the population for HIV in the early 1-2 stages of the disease was 83%. This means that the human immune system can strengthen its ability to fight opportunistic infections and some cancers, which in turn has a positive effect on life expectancy, “he said.
Ways of HIV transmission
He also noted that no cases of the disease were registered among children. According to him, most HIV is transmitted sexually. One of the factors determining the development of the epidemiological situation in Nur-Sultan remains internal and external migration. Annually, 25-30% of cases are foreigners and residents of other cities.
“This year, 19% of HIV cases were registered among people from other cities, and 4.2% – among foreigners,” said Sabit Abdraimov.
According to the director of the AIDS Center, currently 1520 people diagnosed with HIV are registered at the dispensary. Among them are 17 patients under 18 years old. He also noted that with the introduction of highly effective antiretroviral therapy, female patients are more likely to plan a pregnancy and give birth to a healthy baby.
“Since 1997, 233 births have been registered among women, 174 children have been deregistered as healthy children, and the rest are under control up to 2 years according to the algorithm. More than 15 women with HIV-positive status have become pregnant three or more times and given birth to healthy children, ”Sabit Abdraimov said.
According to him, the city AIDS Center received a grant from the Global Fund for HIV component for 2021-2023 by expanding access to prevention, care and support services for vulnerable groups and people living with HIV in order to provide a sustainable national response to the spread of HIV in Kazakhstan. He noted that the grant will provide preventive services, as well as work with 3 NGOs that provide care and support to people living with HIV.
“Implementation of the grant will help solve the problem of employment of vulnerable groups. This is because many outreach workers represent the main groups of the population and do not have a stable income. As a result, 44 outreach workers were provided with jobs and salaries. We always pay attention to the social support of patients. This work is carried out effectively with the participation of non-governmental organizations, the Department of Social Protection, “Sabit Abdraimov said.
It should be noted that HIV is detected by testing. Testing is mandatory and voluntary. Mandatory groups include donors, pregnant women, health workers, convicts and persons at the request of the court and prosecutor’s office. The rest, including vulnerable groups, are tested for HIV on clinical and epidemiological indicators. If the result is positive, a psychologist will be consulted. During the meeting, it was stated that it is necessary to register and start treatment, and that those who evade treatment and infect other people knowingly the status of HIV will be subject to administrative penalties. HIV is a chronic disease that often develops slowly but steadily.
Source: Kazakhtan 2050