AIDS or acquired immunity deficiency syndrome is one big challenge thrown at human race by a tiny, ever changing virus. It has baffled us. troubled us and is multiplying and spreading at a rapid rate. The scientific community in spite of their efforts has not found a cure or method to erase it.
People with AIDS suffer from a set of symptoms and infections resulting from a weak immune system, because of the virus attack. It takes a while for a person to understand that he is not healthy because the disease takes longer time to manifest completely. It takes shape in phases or stages. First, the infection (HIV) followed by flu attacks. T.B. hepatitis (these are called opportunistic illness) and by full blown AIDS and death.
AIDS is spread by sexual intercourse, infected body fluids, from infected needles and from mother to child during child birth. Earlier, only certain group of people like sex- workers, truck drivers, and people having many partners were considered risk groups. Today. it is found in the common population. who don’t belong to the above groups and most worrying fact is AIDS has affected the youth (aged between 16- 35). Doctors find 10 to 1 I new patients daily. in the cities of India.
In India, according to a report of 2006.2.5 million people live with HIV. In Africa it is known to be out of control but in Asia. India has become the highest infected country. And in the world. India is the third highest infected country. This means more and more people will pass on the infection unknowingly and the human force of our country will be hit very badly. It could weaken our nation’s economy or potential to become the next economic power. if it spreads any further. All the hardworking young population will not be able to contribute work properly. country will be hit if tax cannot be collected and infrastructural development will suffer without revenues.
According to a survey in most of the areas there is little understanding of the virus, its transmission and not enough measures to stop it from taking on epidemic proportions. A recent report of 2661 April, 2008 reports that AIDS remains the leading cause of death and lost work days in the most productive age groups in Asia. Nearly 5 million are living with AIDS after two decades of the virus’s attack on humans. In 2007, 440,000 people acquired the infection and 300,000 people died of AIDS related diseases in the same year. It is estimated that 8 million people will get infected by 2020, if Asian countries fail to check this diverse spread of HIV/ AIDS and initiate preventive cum care efforts.
It seems we are sitting over a ‘time bomb’ and it’s just matter of time that it’ll explode. The joint united nations programme on HIV /AIDS (IJNAIDS) with help of its groups are making effort to educate, sensitize, the community/ society towards the victims and bring help. Programs on abstinence and on delaying the initiation of sex are part of the strategies. In India, the national AIDS control organization (NACO) with the support of UN and experts are working in most of the states. They are aiding in community – based network with help of NGOs to reach the victims, provide information, preventive measures and medical care to reduce the symptoms.
Changing one’s attitude and behavior for the good is the key to not get infected. Even if the cure is far away we must make a conscious effort to keep the virus at bay otherwise we will be paying huge prices.