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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 148-149

Strengthening the prevention and control services against HIV infection to attain universal health coverage


1 Member of the Medical Education Unit and Institute Research Council, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV) - Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission01-Apr-2019
Date of Decision17-Apr-2019
Date of Acceptance11-May-2020
Date of Web Publication18-Jul-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
Professor, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV) – Deemed to be University, Tiruporur - Guduvancherry Main Road, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu - 603108
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/JDRNTRUHS.JDRNTRUHS_50_19

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  Abstract 


HIV infection has been acknowledged as a global public health concern since its emergence and it is clearly evident by the fact that the infection has accounted for the lives of 32 million people so far. It is important to consider that owing to the support from multiple sectors and a well-coordinated response owing to the assistance from the welfare agencies, the coverage of the prevention and control services has shown a gradual rise. However, from the public health perspective, it is quite obvious that the reported gains should not be a marker for complacency for the health authorities, as the observed gains are quite heterogeneous and there are a wide range of challenges which need to be addressed. In conclusion, in the battle against HIV epidemic, the need of the hour is to strengthen the package of HIV services and involve all the concerned sectors to ensure coverage of every section of the society.

Keywords: HIV, Universal health coverage, World Health Organization


How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Strengthening the prevention and control services against HIV infection to attain universal health coverage. J NTR Univ Health Sci 2020;9:148-9

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Strengthening the prevention and control services against HIV infection to attain universal health coverage. J NTR Univ Health Sci [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Aug 5];9:148-9. Available from: http://www.jdrntruhs.org/text.asp?2020/9/2/148/289892




  Introduction Top


HIV infection has been acknowledged as a global public health concern since its emergence and it is clearly evident by the fact that the infection has accounted for the lives of 32 million people so far.[1] Moreover, close to 38 million people were living with HIV infection at the end of the year 2018 and these are alarming estimates, because of the burden which it poses on the health care delivery system.[1] The disease has the potential to infect everyone irrespective of social or population characteristics, nevertheless the incidence of the infection is extremely high among high-risk groups (viz. intravenous drug abusers, commercial sex workers, etc.).[1],[2]

Accomplished gains

It is important to consider that owing to the support from multiple sectors and a well-coordinated response owing to the assistance from the welfare agencies, the coverage of the prevention and control services has shown a gradual rise. As a matter of fact, more than 60% of the adults and 54% of the children who are living with HIV in low- and middle-income nations were included as the beneficiary of lifelong antiretroviral therapy in 2018.[1] However, from the public health perspective, it is quite obvious that the reported gains should not be a marker for complacency for the health authorities, as the observed gains are quite heterogeneous and there are a wide range of challenges which need to be addressed.[3]

Ground reality

The ground reality is that even with the availability of a comprehensive package of services and economic assistance from the various national & international welfare agencies, our prevention and control services have not been made accessible and available to the vulnerable high-risk population groups. To take the issue further, we have not succeeded in ensuring the delivery of other essential health care services and thus there is a significant need to strengthen the primary health care.[3] Also, it is essential to introspect and identify the potential reasons which are responsible for enhancing the vulnerability of adolescent boys to HIV infection and the determinants for availing necessary care and support.[2],[3]

Proposed strategies to attain Universal health coverage

With reference to the global commitment to work together for meeting the target of universal health coverage, the need of the hour is to take initiatives to minimize the stigma attributed to the infection and motivate people to seek services from the health care facilities. In addition, all the planned interventions should be done keeping in mind the human rights of the general population and the strategies have to be gender-sensitive, promote equality and developed with an intention to actively involve members of the society.[3],[4] Moreover, the ultimate need is that the planned measures should reach those who are most vulnerable and it has to be ensured through the involvement of the local leaders and representatives.[3] In the long run, the plan is that we should succeed in improving the utilization of the complete package of services so that we can make an impact in the future.[1],[2]

Overall, we have to ensure that in the process to eliminate the disease, the proposed and implemented prevention and control strategies should target each and every individual and not leave anyone behind.[4] This indirectly requires the need to tailor made the interventions in individual nations and settings based on the local customs and norms.[3],[5] This will essentially require community engagement which has to be built upon the key aspect to discourage stigma & discrimination in both community and health care facilities.[3],[4],[5] Finally, all the planned services have to be delivered in a quality-assured manner to benefit the general as well as vulnerable population groups.[1]

Conclusion

In conclusion, in the battle against HIV epidemic, the need of the hour is to strengthen the package of HIV services and involve all the concerned sectors to ensure coverage of every section of the society.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
World Health Organization. HIV/AIDS - Fact sheet; 2019. Available from: https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/hiv-aids [Last accessed on 18 May 2019].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Addressing the public health challenge of HIV infection among the vulnerable population group of transgender: An urgent global need. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2017;10:457-8.  Back to cited text no. 2
  [Full text]  
3.
Ghebreyesus TA. World AIDS Day 2017 - Everybody counts; 2017. Available from: http://who.int/mediacentre/news/statements/2017/world-aids-day/en/ [Last accessed on 1 Apr 2019].  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Assefa Y, Hill PS, Van Damme W, Dean J, Gilks CF. Leaving no one behind: lessons from implementation of policies for universal HIV treatment to universal health coverage. Global Health. 2020;16:17.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Holmes CB, Rabkin M, Ford N, Preko P, Rosen S, Ellman T, et al. Tailored HIV programmes and universal health coverage. Bull World Health Organ 2020;98:87-94.  Back to cited text no. 5
    




 

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