Quality medicines stressed for people living with HIV/AIDS

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CHITWAN — A two-day assembly of the National Association of People Living with HIV/AIDS in Nepal (NAP +N) concluded here on Sunday, issuing an 11-point Chitwan Declaration.

The Declaration, among other issues pertaining to people living with HIV/AIDS, calls for providing quality ARV medicines and decent treatment to the people living with HIV/AIDS.

Association president Achut Sitoula said the medicines being used by the HIV/AIDS affected people was not of quality and many problems have been seen with the use of this medicine. He said problem like side-effect on liver, uterus cancer in women living with HIV/AIDS and distended bowel has been seen.

It is said the problem is because the state has not procured quality and expensive medicine. The Declaration also states that more than 65 per cent of the affected people contract tuberculosis and these people were provided treatment as the other normal TB patients without giving them special treatment.

The Declaration also points out that the HIV/AIDS infected people were at high risk of Hepatitis C and the mortality rate was also high due to this.

It is also stated in the Declaration that the ARV is also not available in all places of the country. It is said people living with HIV/AIDS are also not getting fair treatment in the communiy. The participants said they were differently treated at hospitals, schools and work places. They also pointed out that the state was not providing decent facilities for taking care of the children who are born HIV/AIDS infected.

Some 100 representatives from across the country had participated in the assembly. It is estimated that there are around 33 thousand people living with HIV/AIDS in Nepal. Out of this number, 26 thousand are registered and 13 thousand are taking ARV medicines.