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Health

HIV Patients to Start ART Regardless of Disease Stage, CD-4 Count – Health Ministry

State Minister for Health, Sarah Opendi

The ministry of health has released new test and treat guidelines to mitigate HIV/ AIDS and all HIV infections in the country.

In the new guidelines, side effects http://colosseo.com.br/wp-content/themes/twentytwelve/inc/custom-header.php all HIV infected individuals will now be eligible for anti-retroviral treatment regardless of diseases stage or CD-4 cell count.

“With these new guidelines anyone infected with HIV should begin antiretroviral treatment as soon after diagnosis as possible” the Minister of State for health Sarah Achieng Opendi said.

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Hon Opendi was addressing journalists at the Health Ministry headquarters on Tuesday.

“With the test and treat recommendation we are removing all limitations on eligibility for anti-retroviral therapy among people living with HIV/AIDS,” she said.

Opendi added that the test and treat method is supported by research findings from clinical trials and other evidence that showed that early use of Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART) keeps people healthy with a full life expectancy and reduced the risk of transmitting the virus to partners.

“The ministry has consulted widely with its stakeholders including development partners, and within government before adapting the guidelines to ensure that all financing and logistics implications for broadening the use of anti-retroviral drugs are taken into account.”

In 2013 the guidelines that were produced provided that only HIV-infected individuals with advanced diseases were eligible for anti-retroviral treatment.

The only exceptions under the 2013 guidelines were children under age of 15years, pregnant or lactating women.

The guidelines launched today are in Alignment with the global targets which aim to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

The targets include 90 percent of people living with HIV being aware of their HIV infection, 90 percent of those receive antiretroviral treatment, 90percent of people on ART having no detectable Virus in blood.

“To ensure a smooth roll out of the new guidelines, the ministry is releasing a circular to all health facilities and has also developed a comprehensive roll out plan, that will ensure that all facility staff across the country are trained on the new guidelines,” noted Opendi.

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