India To Launch Ad Campaigns To Create Awareness On HIV/AIDS

NEW DELHI, Oct 26 (Bernama) -- In order to create awareness among people living with HIV/AIDS, the government has planned a series of ad campaigns, starting with information on providing free of cost Antiretroviral Treatment (ART) drugs in more than 95 state-run hospitals, a state-media reported.

The ART drugs is being provided for free of cost to 45,000 people.

Press Trust of India (PTI) quoted Director General of India's National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) Sujatha Rao said many people are still ignorant of this fact and NACO wants to create awareness among them.

"We have already received drugs that could treat 85,000 people. These drugs would be available free in 96 selected government hospitals," she said adding plans were afoot to add a few more centres where these drugs would be made available.

There are an estimated 5.206 million people in the age group of 15 to 49 years with HIV/AIDS in India. The government spends Rs 8,000 (RM644) per year on each person on drugs.

One of the ads to be published tomorrow says, "Ensure you take every dose, on-time, every time. Remember, missing even one dose of ART drugs increases chances of developing drug resistance."

It lists the names of the government hospitals where these drugs are provided free of cost and adds, "Regular intake of ART drugs improves quality of life and increases the life span of people living with AIDS."