HIV among pregnant women down to 0.01% in Dakshina Kannada

Government-run awareness programs led to a steady decline in HIV/AIDS cases in Dakshina Kannada since 2007-08, with cases among pregnant women at 0.01 per cent in the district and at 0.04 per cent in the state.

In fact, 60 pregnant women had tested positive for HIV infection in 2007-08, which has come down to 2 this year till date, DHO Dr Kishore Kumar said. Out of 149 tested for HIV infection in 2021-22, two pregnant women have been tested for the infection. On average, 30,000 pregnant women undergo HIV/AIDS tests in a year in the district.

According to 2018-19 HIV surveillance in 2018-19, infection in India is 0.24 per cent, Karnataka on 16th place in India has 0.22 per cent and in the district, it is 0.25 per cent. HIV cases are highly prevalent in Nagaland, Mizoram, Tripura and Meghalaya. 

HIV prevalence is high in Bagalkot (1.17 per cent), Chitradurga (1.13 per cent), Raichur (0.88per cent), Kalburgi (0.75 per cent), Koppala and Mysuru (0.63 per cent). Since 2007-08, a total of 10,14,925 have undergone HIV tests in the district of which 9,763 have been confirmed with HIV infections.

From 1,169 cases in 2007-2008 among general clients, the number of tested positive cases has declined to 149 in 2021 (till October). The district had reported 607 HIV infections in 2014, 629 in 2015, 595 in 2016, 530 in 2017, 422 in 2018, 263 in 2019, 264 in 2020 and 149 in 2021 till October, informed DHO.

According to the information available with the ART centres in the district, there are 8,628 HIV-infected in the district of whom, 513 have died. A total of 4,136 are undergoing treatment at the ART centres. Among the infected, 4,708 are men, 3,310 are women, 330 are male children and 271 are female children and nine transgenders.

Dr Kishore Kumar said there are 20 holistic counselling and testing centres, two ICTCs under PPP mode, 2 ART, 13 Link ART centres in Dakshina Kannada district. As many as 93 Red Ribbons Clubs have been started in colleges to create awareness on HIV/Aids in the district.

District Aids Control Officer Dr Badruddin said that free legal aid service is also provided for people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHAs) at ART centres. Under the state government travel reimbursement scheme for PLHIVs, 146 beneficiaries received the allowance in 2018-19, 184 in 2019 -20 and 125 in 2020-21.

According to the available statistics of Hongirana positive network, Mangaluru, one infected person has been approved with a scholarship for higher education. Though 11 had applied for Rajiv Gandhi Rural Development Housing Scheme, none have been approved during 2020-21 while one was approved in 2019-20 out of 11 applications submitted. Under the self- employment schemes/bank loans, all the 15 applications were approved in 2018-19, 19 out of 20 applications were approved in 2019-20 and none were approved in 2020-21.

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