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Oral Medicine Program Launched in Sindh for HIV Prevention

Author: Hamna Bano
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With an increase in the number of new HIV cases, Sindh has become the first province to launch an ‘oral medicine program.’

According to recent reports, with an increase in the number of new HIV cases, Sindh has become the first province to launch an ‘oral medicine program’. This program is known by the name Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP). This has been launched to save people from contracting HIV infections that are at high risk.

During the launch event of the PrEP, Dr. Jumman Bahoto the Director General Health Sindh said, “Amid a rise in new HIV infections, we are officially launching in Sindh the Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Program to prevent people from high-risk populations from becoming HIV positive. Sindh has always taken a lead in taking early decisions in the area of health and this step would definitely be followed by others.”

Recent research has proven that oral medicines when taken daily can lower the risk of catching HIV infections by 90 percent and more.

Quoting the PrEP launch as a ‘game changer’, Dr. Bahoto added, “even though it has been more than 10 years since the first evidence of the efficacy of daily oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) was published, much of the PrEP scale-up is still highly concentrated in a small number of countries.”

 

Ms. Yuki Takemoto, the country director of Afghanistan and Pakistan UNAIDS appreciated the Sindh Health Department on the formal launch of the PrEP. She also applauded the political commitment and actions involved to address communities by the government.

“Ensuring a supportive, enabling environment free from stigma and discrimination will help achieve the targets of the Sindh AIDS Strategy 2021-2025 and contribute effectively towards ending AIDS as a public health threat by 2030,” she added.

With the hope to reduce HIV cases, a good number of members from a number of organizations participated in the launch and looked forward to the positive results of the launch.