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news details
Social stigma still plagues HIV-positive in state
World AIDS Day
11/30/2018 10:42:45 PM
Early Times Report

JAMMU, Nov 30: The Social Stigma is still continues to haunt Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) positive people in the Jammu and Kashmir, impelling many of them to leave their treatment midway and disappear.
Moreover, every year lakhs of rupees are being spent to observe World AIDS Day and spread Awareness among the people of the State by the concerned authorities and NGOs but all efforts in vain as society is not allowing them to be part of the society.
An HIV infected patient, wishing not to be named, told that she was infected with HIV from her husband, who died, and since then she was struggling for bread and butter and dignity in the society but she was very disappointed after so many years.
"Since I came to know about the disease, I had to leave my village and moved to other place (does not want to share details) in search of respect and dignity but did not get much relief. Whenever I used to visit the health centre was equally torturing, "she said adding that she had to stop treatment midway. "Now I have again started taking medicines," she informed.
An official, seeking anonymity told Early Times that it was not first incident when the patients had to stop medicine in midway with fear of people (Social Stigma). Many people had disappeared and concerned authority could not find them. Due to social stigma, the concerned authority has not exactly figured of the HIV cases in the State, as many cases are unreported as don't let people know about the disease. "Some of the people in the society are paying role of 'Devil', who don't let victims live in the society with self-respect, "he told with a disappointed face.
Here need to mention that State has more than 4600 patients who are living with the deadly virus and are facing huge hardship to get treatment especially for those who belong to far-flung areas of the State. Out of 4600, more than 1000 patients are died with fear of society and without following required treatments.
The official further said that neither Government nor JKSACS has taken required steps to provide treatment to patients at their doorsteps, who are discouraged by the social stigma attached to the deadly disease. "As a result, nearly 500 patients have left their treatment in midway reportedly due to financial conditions, social stigma and lack of facilities", they said and added that most HIV patients are in poor financial condition, owing to which they at times do not have enough money to travel to Jammu as well as Kashmir for treatment and medication.
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