HIV prog committed to expanding
By Faadhila Thassim
The World Health Organisation (WHO) Sri Lanka, in light of the World Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Day, stated that the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) programme is committed to expanding access to HIV testing and counselling.
The WHO noted that quality care, support and treatment for those living with HIV, is being carried out free of charge.
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) stated that in Sri Lanka, more than 95 per cent of HIV transmissions occur through unprotected sex while HIV can also be transmitted through contaminated needles and syringes but that in Sri Lanka, only less than 1% of transmission occurs through this method.
Transmission from infected mother-to-child is also very rare now as Sri Lanka is one of the few countries which has eliminated mother-to-child transmission of HIV.
The UN Sri Lanka noted that the spread of COVID-19 has threatened and undermined the progress made in terms of health and development, including the gains made against HIV which is a strategy to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030.
“Like all epidemics, it is widening the inequalities that already existed and threatening rights,” the UN noted, categorizing the threatening of rights as those of the right to non-discrimination, the right to privacy, the right to appropriate protection in social security and the right to work.