Communities have a Critical Role to Play in the Fight Against HIV and AIDS

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The Goa State AIDS Control Society held a World AIDS Day celebration on Sunday at Menezes Braganza Hall in Panaji, with the theme “Let Communities Lead.” Secretary of Health Arun Kumar Mishra, IAS, gave the keynote address.

Mishra stated in his speech that communities must take a leading role in the fight against HIV/AIDS, a disease that can be fatal, and that is why the year’s theme, “Let Communities Lead,” is so fitting for the cause. A sense of acceptance within communities is essential if we are to eradicate the stigma, inequity, and discrimination that HIV-positive individuals face in order to defeat HIV/AIDS.

According to him, once society accepts HIV-positive individuals for who they are, it will concentrate more intently on proactive steps to end the virus and stop its spread.

Mishra praised the Goa AIDS Control Society for its unwavering efforts in fighting the horrible virus and putting different precautions in place to stop more infections. He expressed satisfaction that there has been a notable increase in HIV test trends and a decline in HIV cases in recent years.

Dr. Geeta Kakodkar, Director of Health Services, commended the efforts and tenacity of non-governmental organisations fighting HIV/AIDS in the State. She called on the student body to abstain from bad habits like using drugs or alcohol and to avoid falling for harmful content on social media in order to stop the spread of new diseases throughout society.

Dr. Rajendra Borkar, Medical Superintendent of South Goa District Hospital, discussed the current state of HIV/AIDS and the steps that should be taken to avoid contracting the virus.

On this occasion, prizes were given to the winners of a quiz competition that the Goa State AIDS Control Society had organised for upper secondary students. A number of facilities, including NGOs connected to the Goa AIDS Control Society and ICTC/ARTc/LAC/STI/SRL, were also honoured.

Dr. Uttam Desai, Chief Medical Officer, Health Services, welcomed everyone to the meeting, and Umakant Sawant, Jt. Director, GSACS, proposed the vote of gratitude.

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