Are we in danger of an HIV epidemic?

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The HIV virus is spreading very fast in Poland. The data presented by the Supreme Audit Office shows that each year the number of infected increases by 13%. Unfortunately, many people still do not know that they are HIV positive and unknowingly pass it on to other people. Are we at risk of an HIV epidemic?

HIV out of control?

The HIV virus is spreading very fast in Poland. The data presented by the Supreme Audit Office shows that each year the number of infected increases by 13%. Unfortunately, many people still do not know that they are HIV positive and unknowingly pass it on to other people. Are we at risk of an HIV epidemic?

Every year, more and more funds are allocated to the fight against HIV and AIDS. In 2007, PLN 99 million was spent on the operation of the National Program, and now PLN 278 million.

However, the significant increase in funding does not translate into effects, as the rate of HIV infection continues to increase – it is estimated that the number of people infected increases by 13% each year. As many as 62% of carriers do not know who they got infected from. Experts say up to 70% of those infected with HIV may not know that they are carriers of a dangerous virus. As a result, they unknowingly transmit the virus to other people.

NIK also noted the distortions in the statistical data on HIV infection. It turns out that some centers did not provide information about new carriers. Without complete data, it is impossible to determine the risk of epidemic development, and thus to take appropriate preventive measures.

HIV out of control?

Neglected prevention

According to the Supreme Audit Office, the greatest weakness of the National Program is the neglect of prevention. This institution was established to prevent infections and help people suffering from AIDS. Currently, as much as 98% of financial resources are spent on treating sick people, and only 2% on social education.

Obviously, healthcare for HIV-infected people is very important, but without effective preventive measures it will be impossible to stop the wave of infections and the number of carriers will increase. We will quickly feel the effects of this approach – more infections means more need for medical care, which is very expensive. The average annual cost of treating one patient is approx. It should be remembered that patients need medication for the rest of their lives because there is no cure for AIDS.

Currently, the National Program organizes very little training and social campaigns to increase knowledge about the virus and the possibilities of infection. NIK warns that this is a short-sighted tactic. Without prophylaxis, we can soon expect a wave of new infections. The most dangerous, however, is the lack of knowledge – the less we know about HIV / AIDS, the more cases there are.

Hidden HIV

Should we be concerned about the epidemic of HIV infection and AIDS? The increase in new infections and the number of undetected cases make us look to the future with concern. The greatest danger is, of course, the undiagnosed people who unknowingly infect others.

HIV can be transmitted through sexual intercourse and contact with the blood of an infected person. The virus can remain hidden for many years, and the first signs of HIV infection can be mistaken for the flu. The virus slowly destroys the patient’s immune system, making any infection a deadly threat. However, early detection of the virus gives you a chance to live longer and avoid contracting AIDS.

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