HIV and AIDS has been a long battled epidemic across different continents. It was believed to have started in the late 70’s when the HIV virus crossed between chimpanzees to humans. When it was initially identified during this period about 100,000 to 300,000 people were believed to have already been infected.
Though no cure has been found for HIV and AIDS we bring the latest news on how far this dreaded disease has spread and developments on management and early detection of this disease.
A BETTER LIFE FOR SINGAPORE’S HIV PATIENTS
Though both awareness and understanding about HIV/AIDS have improved over the years through education and social media, social stigma still exists against those who have been infected. Patients still live in fear of discrimination and lack of support.
There are a few lucky patients like the 20 HIV+ patients who were able to find support and a welcoming circle of co-patients, staff and doctors at the Patient Care Centre within Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH). They are fortunate to be part of TTSH’s Red Ribbon project participating in rehabilitation programs and monthly monetary support of $400 – $500.
TTSH shares how they recognize the importance of social support for HIV positive patients. They recognize that while advancement in medication allows HIV positive patients to live longer, fear and the lack of love and purpose discourages them from pursuing treatment or following their medical regimen. More than just medicine, TTSH is a good example of what full support means for patients who fight and live with HIV/AIDS so we can only hope that more of establishments and doctors would be like them as there are more than 20 HIV/AIDS patients who need this love and support.
Full news report here: http://www.todayonline.com/daily-focus/health/life-better-now-hiv-patients-spore
WHO Reports the Highest Record of New HIV Cases in Eastern Europe
Though WHO has reported that overall cases of new HIV infections have dropped by 35% since the peak of the pandemic in the millennia lasting 3 decades, they also report that HIV cases in the European Region (including Central Asia) have increased since recording and reports started in the 1980’s.
The increase in HIV cases, counted up to 142,000 people, were mainly from Russia, Ukraine and Central Asia. The transmission of the disease mainly occurred from heterosexual intercourse while transmission via injections remained substantial. The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control accounts that new HIV-AIDS cases increased more than double from the last decade.
These reports were shared by ECDC Spokesperson Caroline Daamen, and she adds cases that in the European Union, in general, has not increased over the past decade.
Read the original news report here: http://uk.reuters.com/article/2015/11/26/uk-health-hiv-who-idUKKBN0TF1OI20151126
1.2 Million Could Benefit from HIV Prophylaxis – CDC
While awareness about HIV-AIDS and general prevention has been shared with the public. A lot of people who are still at substantial risk for HIV infection are unaware that they could take medication and tests to help prevent infection. A survey shared by Anne Suchat, MD, Principal Director of CDC shared how 34% of primary care providers are not even aware that they can prevent HIV infection by using HIV PEP and PrEP.
Meanwhile, to improve from this lack of awareness, some medical associations, local and state departments, advocacy groups and health care providers came together for an awareness campaign about PrEP resulting to an increase of PrEP utilization of Medicaid enrollees. CDC HIV/AIDS Prevention Division Director, Eugene MCray MD, said that it is an effort worth replicating nationwide.
PrEP involving a pill combination of 200 mg of emtricitabine (Truvada) co-formulated with 300 mg of Tenofovir coupled with prevention methods like using condoms and clean needles has proven to be effective in clinical trials. An estimated 1.2 Million people based on a % of population of heterosexual and homosexually active adults, people who inject drugs and men who have intercourse with men, are at substantial risk of infection and could benefit from the use of PrEP. CDC, Advocacy Groups and Healthcare providers encourage and support the awareness of the benefits of HIV Prophylaxis.
Read report by Medpage here: http://www.medpagetoday.com/HIVAIDS/HIVAIDS/54885