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Health

June 20, 2019

Ethiopia donates medicines for treatment of HIV positive children in Sindh

Health

Thu, Jun 20, 2019

Karachi: A consignment of Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ARVs) medicines, donated by the Ministry of Health of Ethiopia for the treatment of children infected with HIV in Ratodero area of Larkana would be handed over to the Sindh health department by the end of this month, World Health Organization (WHO) officials in Pakistan on Thursday.

Similarly, an order for the procurement of 50,000 Rapid Diagnostic Kits to continue the screening of a large number people in Larkana and adjoining areas, has also been placed by the WHO and the consignment would be available by mid of July this year, WHO officials in Islamabad told Sindh health department.

Four more children were tested positive for HIV in Ratodero area of Larkana on Thursday and the number of HIV positive reached 680 since April 25, 2019 while 146 adults including men and women have also been tested positive for the sexually-transmitted and blood-borne disease.

Despite the emergence of such a large number of children with HIV positive status, only 270 have so far been given Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ARVs) at a pediatric HIV treatment center in Larkana, officials of Sindh Aids Control Program (SACP) said, adding that they were awaiting for the consignment of the ARVs from the WHO and other international organizations to start of all the HIV positive people, especially children.

“A consignment of Pediatric formulations for HIV positive children, donated from MOH Ethiopia will be available by end of June 2019”, WHO country representative in Pakistan Dr. Palitha Mahipala said in a letter to the Sindh health department and further assured that they have placed an order for the procurement of 50,000 Rapid Diagnostic Kits (RDTs), which would be supplied to the provincial health department by the mid of next month.

WHO Representative to Pakistan said these supplies were being arranged on the request from the Sindh health department and urged the health department to nominate a physician, Counsellor and a Data Entry Operator so that they could be trained by them.

On another request from the Sindh health department, the WHO Chief in Pakistan said they have also negotiated with the Common Management Unit of the Global Fund for the provision of a CD4 Machine, which will be shifted shortly to the Taluka Hospital Ratodero. It is worth mentioning here that CD4 machines play a crucial role in the counting of CD4 cells in the bodies of the HIV positive patients and help in treatment.

WHO officials further said another team of Infection Prevention Control (IPC) led-by a leading IPC expert has already arrived in Pakistan to train the health officials in Pakistan and in this regard, one of experts Dr. Maha Talaat is already holding meetings and addressing the training sessions in Karachi.

At the same time, four experts including two clinicians trained in treatment of children with HIV and two experts of adults with HIV positive status are landing in Karachi in a couple of days to train local doctors and physicians for the treatment of adults.

“Two teams – one specialized in IPC (Infection Prevention Control) and the other, comprised of experts for the treatment of children with HIV/AIDS are arriving to help local authorities”, State Minister for National Health Services, Regulation and Control Dr. Zafar Mirza confirmed to The News.