Sunday, December 22, 2019

Hiv / Aids An Important Challenge For Public Health...

HIV/AIDS infection has been an important challenge for public health authorities for more than a decade. Although the annual number of new infections has decreased substantially since the initial epidemic in the 1980s, HIV/AIDS infection still represents an important burden for society and for the health care system1,2. According to the CDC, in the United States about 1.2 million people have HIV and about 14% (168,000) of those do not know they have the infection1,2. In 2011, the Public Health Agency of Canada reported that 25% of people with HIV were unaware that they are infected3. Because HIV/AIDS infection is a preventable disease, testing and detecting infected people represent a crucial prevention measure to control the epidemic. We propose that an anonymous HIV testing program should be implemented because there is enough evidence that the potential benefits for the public outweigh the potential harms. An anonymous HIV testing program will encourage people to test especially those who may not test or delay to test because of confidentiality concerns. People who not test or delay to test are at risk of the adverse consequences of untreated disease. In an article published by Schwarcz et al4, half of the patients had a late HIV diagnosis (HIV with AIDS criteria) and the principal reason to not test was fear to diverse aspects. One of the fears was that other people would know about the test result. 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