Preventive Measures in HIV/AIDS

Preventive Measures in HIV/AIDSPreventive Measures in HIV/AIDS

The State Welfare Organization has so far launched 32 HIV/AIDS clubs providing support for over 4,000 HIV-positive individuals. 

The clubs are part of the SWO drive to provide social and emotional support to HIV-infected patients and increase their participation in programs to prevent the AIDS epidemic. 

The number of clubs has increased from 23 in 2015 to 32 at present. Four more clubs are to open soon, said Majid Rezazadeh, director of HIV/AIDS prevention office at the SWO. 

“The schemes with regard to HIV prevention are centered on social behavior and changing lifestyles so as to reduce social harm as well as sexually transmitted diseases,” he said, IRNA reported. 

The SWO is the second key contributor in the National Strategic Plan on HIV Control after the Health Ministry, and is in charge of controlling high-risk populations including women indulging in risky behavior, drug addicts and street children.

It also actively cooperates with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria along with the ministry. 

Efforts to provide employment, housing and counseling subsidies for patients and their families as well as screening and caring of orphaned infants and children with the disease, are among the other SWO measures in this regard. 

Currently, around 137 drop-in centers, 65 night shelters and 255 mobile teams offer services to high-risk groups.  

“If people do not refer to the places voluntarily, mobile teams will go to their hangouts and provide them health equipment,” said Rezazadeh. 

The National Strategic Plan on HIV Control has been devised to provide guidelines and coordinate all relevant organizations vis-à-vis the problem. 

It covers a variety of issues facing the infected groups including social stigma, exclusion and lack of access to health services.  

Iran’s measures to control HIV/AIDS have been commended globally. Last year, the Tehran Positive Club, a non-governmental organization, was among the 10 exceptional community-based organizations to win the 2016 Red Ribbon Award for their inspiring work in helping reduce the impact of the AIDS epidemic. 

Based on the latest reports (till June 2016), 32,670 people in Iran were officially diagnosed with HIV/AIDS of which 84% are men and 16% women. 

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