Fri | Jan 19, 2018

Medical Association voices AIDS concerns

Published:Thursday | December 1, 2016 | 10:16 AM

As countries around the globe mark World AIDS day 2016, the Medical Association of Jamaica (MAJ) is lamenting the effects HIV/AIDS continues to have on the local population.

It notes that approximately 1.6 per cent of Jamaica's adult population lives with HIV/AIDS representing about 32,000 people.

The MAJ says it is estimated that about 50 per cent of persons living with HIV do not know that they are HIV positive.

The Association says AIDS and sexually transmitted infections (STI) have hit hardest among the young and productive age group of 15 to 49 years and are among the leading cause of death for males and females 15 to 24 years old.

The MAJ says over 13  children have been made orphans due to the disease.

The association says while Jamaicans should celebrate the advances made as a nation, some critical areas must be targeted if the fight is to be won.

It says there should be no reduction in the availability of and access to antiretroviral drugs.

It says the lobby must continue for reduction of violence against women, as violence can engender coercive sexual acts, which often take place without a condom.

The theme for World AIDS Day 2016 is 'Take the Challenge: end AIDS'.