The Chief Minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar assured that the Bihar Government would do all that it can in restricting the alarming spread of AIDS/HIV in the state , addressing a HIV/AIDS workshop, organized by the Udayan Sharma foundation, Samyak and the National Aids Control Organization (NACO).
Expressing concern over the explosive prevalence of HIV/AIDS in 7 districts in Bihar, the Minster highlighted the need for concerted efforts in creating awareness and reducing stigmatization against the disease. He further called for assistance and support from the media; HIV/AIDS support organizations and NGOs in combating the AIDS epidemic in Bihar.
'The greatest challenge is to make all out efforts in all directions to prevent and control the spread of the disease besides improving the quality of care and treatment for the people afflicted by the disease,' concluded the Minister.
According to official reports, Bihar can now boast of 8128 diagnosed HIV cases and 1070 cases of AIDS. The AIDS virus has claimed the lives of nearly 70 individuals so far, said Vishal Singh, Joint Director, Bihar State Aids Control Society (BSACS). He further stated that it could result in a devastating epidemic if appropriate steps are implemented at the earliest.
The situation is particularly grave in Sitamarhi, Madhubani, Kishanganj, Champaran (east and west), Khagaria and Muzaffarpur districts. The prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS is the highest in Sitamarhi district, with a 3.7%. East Champaran is closely following this with 2.3 per cent.
In view of the above situation, it is high time that the Bihar health officials institute suitable health measures to tackle this menace.