KARACHI: At least 29 people died of HIV/AIDS across the Sindh province in 2014 and majority of deaths and cases occurs in injecting drug users, said Provincial Program Manager, Sindh AIDS Control Program (SACP) Dr Sikander Ali Shah on Tuesday.
Dr Shah told PPI here that 29 people expired last year from AIDS disease throughout the province. These victims included 24 males, four females and one child. He said over 400 HIV/AIDS new cases were registered for in 2014.
He said Sindh AIDS Program have registered 3,621 HIV/AIDS positive cases since 2006; out of them 3079 are males, 408 females, 102 children and 32 transgender. He said all registered patients were receiving HIV/AIDS treatment from various centers. He said approximately 87,000 people are living with HIV/AIDs in Pakistan out of them 40 to 45 percent in Sindh.
He explained 80 percent HIV/ AIDS cases were reported from Karachi out of total registered patients in Sindh province but all infected people did not belong to Karachi or Sindh. He said five new AIDS diagnostic & treatment centers would be established in different cities of province soon and a PC-1 for these centers is under process.
Dr Shah said new diagnostic & treatment centers would establish in Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center Karachi, Abbasi Shaheed Hospital Karachi, besides hospitals in Hyderabad, Nawabshah and Mirpurkhas.
He said currently five diagnostic and treatment centers are operating under Sindh AIDS Program: two in Civil Hospital Karachi, one in Indus Hospital, one in Aga Khan Hospital and one in Larkana.
He said major high risk groups of HIV/AIDS prevalence are injecting drug users (IDUs), men having sex with men (MSMs), long distance truck drivers, female sex workers, transgender sex workers, jail inmates, children born to infected parent, street children and victims of unsafe medical procedures.
He further explained that HIV virus takes five to ten years to transform into AIDS disease. He said HIV virus generally decreases the immunity power but proper usage of medicines can help to increase patient’s immunity. He said Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) also working with Provincial AIDS Program under public private partnership to root out this disease from the province.