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Resolution 75/260 of UNGA: HIV/AIDS

  • 12 Jun 2021
  • 6 min read

Why in News

The Union Health Minister addressed the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on prevention of HIV/AIDS.

  • The Resolution 75/260 of UNGA deals with the Implementation of the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS and the political declarations on HIV/AIDS.

Key Points

  • Important Points of Address:
    • HIV/AIDS Prevention Model: India’s unique HIV prevention model is centered around the concept of ‘Social Contracting' through which the ‘Targeted Interventions Program’ is implemented with support from civil society.
      • The program is aimed at behaviour change, communication, outreach, service delivery, counselling & testing and ensuring linkages to HIV care.
    • Legal Framework: The HIV & AIDS Prevention and Control Act, 2017, provides a legal and enabling framework to safeguard the human rights of infected and affected populations.
    • Free Treatment: India is providing free anti-retro-viral treatment to close to 1.4 million people.
      • Anti-retro-viral therapy: It is a combination of daily medications that stop the virus from reproducing.
      • The therapy helps in protecting CD4 cells thus keeping the immune system strong enough to fight off the disease.
      • It, besides reducing the risk of transmission of HIV, also helps in stopping its progression to AIDS (a spectrum of conditions caused by infection due to HIV).
    • National AIDS Control Program:
      • The National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) launched the first phase of the National AIDS Control Programme in (1992-1999).
        • NACO is a division of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
        • It was constituted in 1992 to provide leadership to HIV/AIDS control programmes in India through 35 HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control Societies.
      • India is gradually transitioning the people living with HIV to Dolutegravir (a safer and efficacious anti-retro-viral medication regimen).
    • The target of Elimination of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV: For this, viral load testing facilities have been scaled up, and HIV counselling, testing and community-based screening for early diagnosis have been ramped up.
  • Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) and HIV/AIDS: There are a number of SDGs related to the HIV response:
    • SDG 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages.
      • Target 3.3: End AIDS as a public health threat by 2030
    • SDG 4: Quality education, including targets on comprehensive sexual and reproductive health (SRH) education and life skills.
    • SDG 5: Gender equality, including targets on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and the elimination of violence, harmful gender norms and practices.
    • SDG 10: Reduced inequalities, including targets on protection against discrimination, and the empowerment of people to claim their rights and enhance access to HIV services.
    • SDG 16: Peace, justice and strong institutions, including reduced violence against key populations and people living with HIV.
  • Other Initiatives:
    • Project Sunrise: The initiative was launched by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in 2016, to tackle the rising HIV prevalence in north-eastern states in India, especially among people injecting drugs.
    • The Red Ribbon: The red ribbon is the universal symbol of awareness and support for people living with HIV.
      • Wearing a ribbon is a great way to raise awareness on and during the run up to World AIDS Day.
    • 90-90-90: 90% of those who are HIV positive in the country know their status, 90% of those who know their status are on treatment and 90% of those who are on treatment experience effective viral load suppression.
    • Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM): The Global Fund is a 21st-century partnership organization designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics.

Human Immunodeficiency Virus

  • HIV attacks CD4, a type of White Blood Cell (T cells) in the body’s immune system. T cells are those cells that move around the body detecting anomalies and infections in cells.
  • After entering the body, HIV multiplies itself and destroys CD4 cells, thus severely damaging the human immune system. Once this virus enters the body, it can never be removed.
    • The CD4 count of a person infected with HIV reduces significantly. In a healthy body, CD4 count is between 500- 1600, but in an infected body, it can go as low as 200.
  • Weak immune system makes a person prone to opportunistic infections and cancer. It becomes difficult for a person infected with this virus to recover from even a minor injury or sickness.
  • By receiving treatment, severe forms of HIV can be prevented.

Source: PIB

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