Tuesday, December 1, 2009

UNICEF: 'Paediatric HIV care should be integral to health programmes

Early diagnosis of HIV without regular follow ups that ensure access to health services is of little use. Keeping that in mind, paediatric HIV care and treatment need to become an integral part of infant and child survival and health programme, a Unicef report said Monday.

A day before World AIDS Day, the report said failure to follow-up on mothers and children after birth represents both avoidable child death and a massive loss of investment as children identified in need and who have been referred to services do not access them. 

In this regard, the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) in India is planning to roll out the early infant diagnosis by 2010 in 700 integrated counselling and testing centres (ICTC) across the country.

‘Since 2005 many lives have been saved because of interventions, such as combination prevention efforts with young people, early infant diagnosis of HIV and antiretrovirals (ARVs) for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV,’ the report which was released in New York said.

In terms of results, the report said that there has been a substantial increase in access to preventing mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV.

‘In 2008, in low-and middle-income countries, 45 percent of pregnant women living with HIV received antiretroviral drugs to keep them from passing the virus to their babies. That represents an increase from 35 percent in 2007 and from just 10 percent in 2004,’ it said.

India reported 10,673 women receiving ARV prophylaxis in 2008 out of an estimated 49,000 HIV positive pregnant women.

From Sify

[Via http://myviews4life.wordpress.com]

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