KMU observes World AIDS Day

Staff Reporter

PESHAWAR: Khyber Medical University (KMU)-Institute of Public Health and Social Sciences (IPH&SS) organized a seminar on Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) World Day to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and demonstrate international solidarity in the face of the epidemic.

Secretary Health Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Muhammad Yahya Akhunzada was the chief guest whereas the Vice Chancellor KMU Prof Dr Arshad Javaid grace the occasion as guest of honor. Besides others, Registrar KMU Prof Dr Muhammad Saleem Gandapur, Project Director Aids Control Program KP Dr Muhammad Saleem Khan, Dr .Mudassir Shahzad Deputy Director Aids Control Programme, CEO Health Care Commission KP Dr Maqsud and Pro-VC KMU Prof Dr Zia-ul-Haq were also present at the occasion.

Talking to seminar, Secretary Health Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Muhammad Yahya Akhunzada reiterated the government’s promise to work towards the eradication and control of HIV/AIDS from the society. He maintained that the provincial government was conscious of its responsibilities and accord high preference to prevention and treatment of this disease.  He said that the World AIDS Day was really important for Pakistan after the discovery of a number of HIV/AIDS cases in the province of Sindh. Media’s attention and public reaction to the cases was a powerful reminder of the dislike of   government and our society towards the global epidemic, he added.

While speaking to the occasion, VC KMU Prof Dr Arshad Javaid said that according to the UNAID there were 160,000 HIV positive people in Pakistan and they were those who were registered with the state-run AIDS control programs, adding that the number could be worse as many even do not know if they were infected or not. “This is due to the prevailing ignorance about the disease and the scarcity of testing and screening facilities across the country. It is time the disease to be cured so that a new generation remains safe from the infectious destruction. Each of us needs to play our proper role in educating those communities about the concealed danger who may not know the fatal scale of the infectious killer. Those tested positive should not be labeled, instead they should be treated as common people,” he maintained.

Talking to seminar, Project Director Aids Control Program, Dr Muhammad Saleem Khan highlighted that social prescription, unqualified doctors and hazardous sexual and medical practices, including the reuse of syringes, sharing of needles by drug users, insufficient screening of blood donors, and infected surgical and dialysis equipment, had all contributed to the highest prevalence of HIV/AIDS in Pakistan. Pro-VC KMU Prof Dr Zia ul Haq, CEO Health Care Commission Dr Maqsud and Dr Fawad CDC, China also talked to seminar.

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