Mangalore: In Dakshina Kannada district, the current count of AIDS patients stands at 10,431, as revealed by District Health Officer Dr. Thimmaiah during a press conference on Wednesday. He further informed that 209 cases were identified from April to October this year.
District Health Officer Dr. Thimmaiah shared crucial data during a press conference on Wednesday. He discussed the upcoming AIDS Prevention Day celebrations scheduled for December 1 at Kanachur Medical Institute, emphasizing the importance of raising awareness about HIV/AIDS in the community.
In 2007-08, Dakshina Kannada district recorded 1,169 HIV cases, which decreased to 1064 the following year and continued to decline to three digits in subsequent years. A significant milestone was achieved in 2016-17, with less than 600 cases reported. Over the last five years, the number of patients has consistently remained below 300, showcasing positive progress in HIV/AIDS management and prevention efforts.
In the district, there are 19 counseling and testing centers dedicated to preventing HIV infection. Additionally, there are 3 ART (Antiretroviral Therapy) centers and 13 LING ART (Link ART) centers. Dr. Thimmaiah highlighted the presence of 54 red ribbon clubs, 14 blood bank centers, and 3 blood storage units, underscoring the comprehensive infrastructure and resources dedicated to HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, and support services.
In observance of AIDS Prevention Day, a procession (jatha) is scheduled for December 1 at 7 am, commencing from Bavutagudda to SDM Law College. Mayor Sudheer Shetty is set to inaugurate the event, and Assembly Speaker U T Khader will inaugurate the day-long program, highlighting the significance of community involvement and leadership in raising awareness about HIV/AIDS and fostering prevention efforts.
District Tuberculosis and AIDS Control Officer Dr. Badruddin, along with Programme Coordinator Mahesh, were present during the event, emphasizing the collaborative efforts of health officials in overseeing tuberculosis and AIDS control measures in the district. Their presence underscores the commitment to addressing public health challenges and ensuring comprehensive healthcare services for the community.
Over the course of 17 years, a substantial 7,49,494 individuals have undergone testing in the district, underscoring the persistent efforts to promote health awareness, early detection, and preventive measures against HIV/AIDS.