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Public awareness urged as HIV cases reach 84 in Khost

Public awareness urged as HIV cases reach 84 in Khost

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Dec 03, 2017 - 20:14

KHOST CITY (Pajhwok): Lack of awareness about HIV/AIDS disease has been behind the increasing positive cases in southeastern Khost province, officials said Sunday.

Provincial Public Healthinfo-icon Director Dr. Habib Shah Ansari told Pajhwok on the sidelines of a gathering marking Worldinfo-icon AIDS Day here that about 84 HIV-positive cases had been registered with the HIV virus preventing centre in Khost. Of the patients, 34 are womeninfo-icon and the remaining men.

He said AIDS disease was socially considered a big shame; so many HIV-infected people didn’t dare to visit the HIV centre.

He said the number of patients recorded by the World Health Organization (WHO) in the province was more than what they had registered. “We have about 84 positive cases so far, the number increased compared to the past.”

The Khost Public Health Department contagious diseases section in-charge, Dr. Gul Ahmad Shah, told Pajhwok if people remained unaware how AIDS spread, more people would catch the chronic disease.

“People think HIV only spreads through sexual contact, whereas this virus can be transferred from one person to another through seven different ways.”

“Contact between broken skin, wounds, or mucous membranes and HIV-infected blood or blood-contaminated body fluids and others transfer the virus.”

Public Health Director Ansari asked religious scholars, tribal elders and civil societyinfo-icon activists to help in spreading awareness about HIV. “We request clerics, tribal elders and media outlets to help us in preventing this disease and promoting awareness in this regard.”

World AIDS Day, designated on 1 December every year since 1988, is an international day dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of HIV infection and mourning those who have died of the disease.

According to health officials, the virus has been on the rise in Afghanistaninfo-icon over the past few years, citing migrationinfo-icon and people visiting various countries of the world as main reasons.

sns/ma

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