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AIDS Patients rising in Khulna
71 detected, 25 deaths in one year

Md Hasanur Rahman Tanzir:

The number of HIV infected patients is increasing in Khulna region. More than twice as many patients have been infected and died this year than last year. Civil society people including Khulna doctors have expressed concern about this. Although various activities are being carried out by government and pri-vate organizations to prevent AIDS.
HIV infection or AIDS has been detected in the sample of 71 people including children at Anti Retrovi-ral Therapy (ART) Center at Khulna Medical College (KMC) Hospital in one year till last October. At the same time, 25 people died, including children, carrying this germ. Among the divisions, Khulna dis-trict has the highest number of cases and deaths. Last year, 65 people including children were diagnosed with AIDS in Khulna Division. 18 people including children died. At that time, 28 people including two children were identified in Khulna district and 8 people including children died.
These statistics show that the number of AIDS cases and deaths are increasing day by day in Khulna. Children are not left out.
According to the World Health Organization, there is still no cure for HIV infection. However, the in-crease in effective HIV prevention, diagnosis and treatment facilities has made it possible for people liv-ing with the disease to lead healthy lives.
According to kmc ART Center, from November 2022 to October 2023, 1,202 people, including chil-dren, were tested at this center, of which 71 people, including children, were diagnosed with HIV. Among them 46 men and 23 women. Among them there are 2 children (male) and 3 children (female). Besides, there are two of the third gender.
35 people from Khulna, 11 from Bagerhat, 7 from Narail, 9 from Jessore, 3 from Satkhira, 2 from Go-palganj and one each from Barguna, Barisal, Jhenaidah and Narayanganj are among those who have been diagnosed with the virus in this center.
A total of 25 people died during this period. Among them there are 8 residents of Khulna, 2 people of Satkhira, 7 people of Jashore, 3 people of Narail, 3 people of Bagerhat, 1 person of Meherpur and 1 person of Rajshahi. Among the patients who died, 16 were male and 9 were female. Among them are 10-year-old children (male). He was a resident of Jashore.
From November 2021 to October 2022, 923 people were tested for AIDS at the ART Center of kmc Hospital. Among them, 65 people, including three children, were diagnosed with AIDS. Among those identified, 33 were male and 32 were female. 18 people died during this time.
It is known that 116 new people were given HIV/AIDS treatment at kmc Hospital’s ART Center in one year till last October. Out of which 71 people were identified from kmc’s ART. The remaining 45 were referred from NGOs and government hospitals in different districts. Among them three from BSMMU ART Center, 2 from Dhaka Infectious Disease Hospital, 1 from Sirajganj ART, 15 from Jashore ART, 1 from Sylhet ART, 10 from DAM (MSM) NGO office and Ashar Alo Society (AAS) NGO. 13 people came from office.
Among the newly served patients are 40 general population, 44 homosexuals, 5 sex workers, 10 TB pa-tients, 3 sex workers (partners), 3 transgender, 5 expats, 2 AIDS partners and 10 homosexual partners.
Medical Officer (Medicine) of Khulna Medical College Hospital and Focal Person of ART Center Dr. Deep Kumar Das said that the hospital has a program called ‘Prevention Mother to Child Transmission’ (PMCT) for pregnant mothers with HIV. This program provides services to HIV/AIDS positive women to make their babies HIV negative. This center provides free HIV testing for people at all levels. At the same time, all types of tests and 15-16 types of medicines are provided free of cost to people suffering from HIV/AIDS.
Experts say, apart from physical intercourse, one can become HIV positive for many reasons. A retrovi-rus called ‘Human Immunodeficiency Virus’ (HIV) is responsible for AIDS. The virus survives only in human blood and other bodily fluids. Once this virus enters the body, it weakens the immune system. The body cannot stop even a cold.
Khulna Civil Surgeon Office Medical Officer (CS) Dr. Sheikh Sadia Manowara Usha said, to avoid AIDS, one should stay away from extramarital relations. If there is a venereal disease or infection of the reproductive system, it should be treated quickly. Condom use is very important in unsafe sex. Not reus-ing single-use syringes or needles, if blood or organ donation is required, routine HIV testing before dialysis for kidney patients, HIV-positive mothers should be put on therapy. Massive public awareness should be ensured.
Meanwhile, Khulna Civil Surgeon Dr. Md. Sabizur Rahman said, being a border area, the number of patients suffering from AIDS is increasing in Khulna region. Uncontrolled lifestyle of people is also responsible for this. Campaigning to prevent AIDS. People need to be more aware. Apart from this, test instructions have been given at the upazila level for the detection of AIDS.
Many people suffering from shyness do not seek treatment. He thinks that everyone should have more sympathy for the victims.

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