Campaign to prevent HIV transmission among children

RUPANDEHI: A campaign has been put in place in Rupandehi to keep children born to mother with HIV safe from the pandemic disease.

The campaign has been initiated in 18 birthing centres including three big hospitals in the district.

The community-based child-focused HIV preventive service was launched this year in all 18 birthing centres along the Amda Hospital Butwal, Devdaha Medical College, UCMS Bhairahawa, said acting Chief of Rupandehi District Public Health Office, Tikaram Adhikari.

There is 20 to 45 per cent chance of HIV transmission to child born from an infected mother, said Public Health Officer at the National AIDS and STD Prevention Centre, Krishna Prasad Nagila. He further said that the rate can be reduced to less than two per cent if the programme is operated effectively.

The HIV transmission from mother to child is 5-10 per cent during pregnancy, 10-15 per cent while giving birth and 5-20 per cent while breastfeeding, he informed.

To prevent this, the pregnant mother will be provided medicines and counseling services while training will be imparted to the health workers providing services to this effect.

Though the programme had been rolled out in Nepal since 2005, it will be in put in place in Rupandehi from 2016. At present, the programme is being implemented in 15 districts of the country including all districts of Lumbini zone.