WHO collaborates with Sindh health dept to fight HIV

Henrietta Brewer
June 1, 2019

The Sindh health department blamed "quacks" or unqualified practitioners for reusing syringes which is one of the major source of HIV spread among the general population, especially children.

Larkana now has 4 established hospitals for the HIV treatments and several screening camps across the district. The majority of those infected are children and young people - more than half of them are children under the age of five.

A team led by doctors from the World Health Organisation (WHO) is visiting the region on Thursday to determine the exact cause of the epidemic and suggest preventive measures, Memon said. The WHO team will be working closely with these hospitals and the field teams now placed in the Larkana district. "We are expecting a 10-member rapid response team from the WHO and Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to arrive in a few days and we will be able to know the exact reason for the outbreak of the disease in Ratodero", Zafar Mirza, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on National Health Services, was quoted as saying by the Dawn.

The team is working closely with the ministry in Pakistan and partners, including the Aga Khan University, Pakistan's Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme (FELTP), UNAIDS and Unicef in Larkana.

Meanwhile, the Sindh High Court (SHC) has issued notice to the health authorities, seeking their replies to a petition against the delay in setting up the Sindh AIDS Commission.

The federal government is providing 50,000 HIV screening kits to Sindh.

The SHC on Tuesday put the Sindh chief secretary, health secretary, health director-general and program manager of Sindh AIDS Control Programme on notice in the petition.

The petitioner contended that the SHC should ask the government to explain the around six years of delay in the setting up of the commission, which will comprise health officials and stakeholders from the civil society.

Till now 681 HIV positive cases have been identified among the 21,375 tested in Ratodero town of Larkana district in the north-west part of the province.

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