Dharamshala: Department of Health, with assistance from the Department of Education and Department of Home, observed World AIDS day at the settlements and in Tibetan Schools across India on 1 December 2022. Health Department, with funding from PRM (US), allocated budgets to cover expenses related to the planning and implementing awareness programs and activities in the settlements and schools.
The main objective behind observing this day is to educate and improve knowledge on HIV/AIDS among the public to prevent new HIV/AIDS transmissions. And to support people with HIV/AIDS by eliminating discrimination which hinders them from opening up and seeking help in terms of medical and other needs.
Following are some of the important factors the department is focused on.
- Encouraging people to get tested for HIV.
- Encourage People living with HIV/AIDS to visit the ART centre regularly and take Anti-retroviral treatment on time.
- Informing about HIV/AIDS and enacting the preventive measures without hesitation.
- Discouraging people from discriminating against the patient and the stigma of HIV/AIDS.
The day was observed with various awareness activities ranging from Health talks, movie screening on the topic, sports and games, Drama and skit play, essays and drawing competition, Quiz competition, street march, free HIV test campaign, poster and booklet distribution in the settlement and in schools.
Currently, the Department of Health, CTA, is working towards preventive measures by conducting awareness campaigns and encouraging people to avail free HIV tests at the Health Department’s unit hospital, where service is provided for free. The department also supports and assists patients with medical and treatment, along with providing travel and daily allowances for monthly ART centre visits and check-ups. The department is also giving the patients a sum of Rs 3000/month as nutritional support.
Tibetans having such problems can contact the department of Health, CTA via the Settlement office or the Settlement’s Health care centre for assistance and support.