11 July 2024

On the occasion of the World’s AIDS Day on December 1, the Ministry of Public Health has set a target to resolve AIDS problems by reducing the number of new cases of people infected with HIV to a maximum of 1,000 and the fatality rate of AIDS sufferers to not exceeding 4,000 cases per year by the year 2030.

At the same time, the ministry aims to reduce the rate of discrimination and stigmatization to people with AIDS by up to 90 percent.

The Disease Control Department which is under the Ministry of Public Health has coined a campaign motto to mark the World AIDS Day today, “Know Your Status”, to educate the people about the disease and to encourage the high-risk groups to have blood tests so those tested positive with HIV will have a chance to have access to treatment.

Director of AIDS Office of the Department of Disease Control Dr Sarayuth Uttamangkhapong said early detection of the disease was a key to the prevention of the virus to spread out and early treatment would enable AIDS sufferers to spend their life in the society as normal like the other people.

He admitted that people infected with HIV in Thailand are still being stigmatized and treated with discrimination.

Statistics in 2017 shows that there are 15 new AIDS cases each day or about 6,500 new cases annually with the total number of people infected with HIV being estimated at about 400,000.  But of these numbers, 98 percent were aware of the fact that they were infected and, of these, 75 percent have received anti-AIDS medication and, of these, the medication worked on 84 percent of the cases in reducing the virus load.

The Disease Control Department also aims to reduce cases of mother-to-baby HIV or syphilis infection to one percent in the next two years through blood tests of couples before and after pregnancy.