Health care providers should ensure non discriminatory attitude towards People Living with HIV/AIDS especially proper care and attention to be given to the pregnant women. Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Punjab Mr. Surjit Kumar Jyani Chief Guest presiding over a state level function organised by on the occasion of World Aids Day said that HIV/AIDS is still a serious health concern for not only the state of Punjab but for the country. At a function organised by the Punjab AIDS control society at Auditorium of Punjab Health Systems Corporation here today Health Minister laid emphasised on need of ensuring institutional delivery to prevent parent to child transmission of HIV. He stressed that there should not be new infections of HIV in the coming years. He also distributed sewing machines to needy widows of poor families on this occasion.
Speaking on occasion, Mrs Vini Mahajan, Principal Secretary Health & Family Welfare , Punjab emphasised on need to make a concerted effort to achieve the goal of getting to “Zero new infection, zero discrimination and zero AIDS related deaths” in the state by 2015. She also added that in last six months, no new infection was detected among High Risk Group Population in five districts namely Fazilka, Muktsar, Bathinda, Mansa and Sangrur.Mr. Hussan Lal, Project Director, PSACS talked about HIV situation in the state of Punjab. He informed that Punjab has reported number of 27988 PLHAs with adult HIV prevalence of 0.18%. Over the years, the HIV epidemic has shifted from the urban to rural population and from High Risk Group (HRG) to general population affecting women and youth in particular. Although the main transmission route continues to be sexual in Punjab, like, the rest of India, HIV positivity among Injecting Drug Users (IDUs) has emerged as a major concern for the state. HIV positivity among IDUs in the state is 21.02% against the national average of 7.2%.He elaborated on the HIV services being provided through Punjab SACS in different parts of the state. He also talked about the initiatives taken by PSACS to address drug related HIV problem in the state. Others promnent Dr. Karanjit Singh, Director Health Services (DHS) and Dr. Jatinder Kaur, Director, Family Welfare, Punjab also spoke on the occasion. More than 200 representatives of Targeted Intervention (TI) Project, Integrated Counselling and Testing Centre (ICTC), ART Centre, Blood Banks and Suraksha clinics participated in the event to enhance awareness on HIV/AIDS. On this occasion, a Rally was organised and Painting competition was also conducted in 6 schools to enhance awareness on HIV AIDS and winners of this competition were awarded on this day.