Cases of HIV/AIDS under-reported

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The HIV/AIDS-positive status of 1,800 persons in Antigua and Barbuda may be unreported to the AIDS Secretariat, according to Eleanor Frederick, a public health consultant.
Frederick, who represents the Antigua and Barbuda HIV/AIDS Network Inc. yesterday said on OBSERVER AM, “We know the rate of HIV is two to three times more than what is reported.”
She continued by saying, “We have a high rate of incidences that we are unaware of, and with those who haven’t reported their status, that means there is transmission taking place.”
During a discussion to mark World AIDS Day, Frederick was joined by Dr. Maria Pereira, an HIV/AIDS clinical care coordinator, who said that the unaccounted cases are a result of overseas testing and others not getting tested.
Dr. Pereira said the AIDS Secretariat has 920 HIV positive cases presently on record, but only 300 of those individuals are receiving treatment covered by the Ministry of Health. This leaves over 600 persons who have opted for private treatment locally or abroad, and some who go untreated.
(More in today’s Daily Observer)

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