GUWAHATI: HIV-positive cases rise in Assam from 2002-03 when 79 cases were detected. From April to October 2022-23, 2,269.HIV-positive cases were detected in the state.
According to Assam State AIDS Control Society (ASACS), 81.6 per cent of HIV transmission is through heterosexuals, 5.5 per cent through HIV-infected syringes and needles, 4.7 per cent from parents to children, 4.6 per cent through homosexuals etc.
Tomorrow is World AIDS Day. Along with the rest of the world, the ASACS has been observing the day since 2002 when it started awareness drives, held adolescent education programmes in schools, ART (Anti-Retroviral Therapy) for people living with HIV, etc. The HIV prevalence rate in Assam is 0.09 per cent against 0.21 per cent at the national level.
According to the NACO's (National AIDS Control Organization) HIV Estimated Report, 2021, Assam has an estimated 25,073 people living with HIV, including 45 per cent females and 3 per cent children.
According to sources, the prevalence of HIV has gone up among drug addicts in the state as they share syringes and needles. Heterosexuals also hardly use preventive measures due to ignorance or otherwise, leading to infection.
Kamrup (Metro) tops the list in HIV prevalence with 7,610 cases in the state. Following Kamrup (M) is Cachar with 5,200 cases, Nagaon with 1,602 and Dibrugarh with 1,402.
The ASACS will hold programmes on World AIDS Day at the GMCH (Gauhati Medical College & Hospital) tomorrow. It will take out a rally with college and university students, NGO workers and others. Health Minister Keshab Mahanta will launch ten OPD-OST (Opioid Substitution Therapy) dispensing centres at ten district hospitals in the state.