Kazakhstan has joined the Global Campaign "Time for Equality"


December 1, 2022

On the eve of World AIDS Day, Kazakhstan joined the UNAIDS Global Campaign, which is held under the motto "Time for Equality".

Forty years have passed since the first cases of AIDS were registered in the world, but HIV still remains a global threat. Key populations that are most at risk of HIV infection face stigma and discrimination. The motto of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) "Time for Equality" is a call to action. It encourages all of us to implement proven practical measures necessary to eradicate AIDS. Among them: improving the availability and quality of services for the prevention, testing and treatment of HIV infection, so that every person in need is provided with everything necessary. "Time for Equality" is a motto calling to resist the stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV and representatives of key groups. If the diagnosis and treatment of HIV infection is provided by the state, then it is possible to resist stigma and discrimination with the help of enlightenment, popularization of knowledge and tolerance.

- Today, the diagnosis of "HIV infection" is no longer a fatal disease. Thanks to the achievements of modern medicine, HIV is recognized by WHO as a chronic infectious disease. People living with HIV (PLHIV), using antiretroviral therapy (ART), can live a long and high-quality life, have families and healthy children. As part of the implementation of the goal of the UN Political Declaration of 2021 and the goals of UNAIDS 95-95-95 in Kazakhstan, 87 percent of people living with HIV are aware of their HIV status, 81 of them are taking ART, 85 percent have a reduced viral load, - said A. Abishev, Director of the Kazakh Scientific Center for Dermatology and Infectious Diseases of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

The achievements illustrate the joint fruitful activities of state, international and non-governmental organizations. As a result of the ongoing anti-epidemic measures, Kazakhstan is in a concentrated stage of the HIV and AIDS epidemic (0.2% of the population with a global average of 1.1%). Over the past ten years, the mortality of PLHIV has halved. Every year more and more Kazakhstanis want to know about their HIV status. Every year, more than 10% of the population is tested in the country.

The HIV test can be taken at the regional AIDS Center or at the polyclinic at the place of attachment, confidentially, anonymously, free of charge. Express testing is also carried out by NGOs. In accordance with WHO recommendations, pre-contact prophylaxis is being introduced from 2021: regular ART intake by people who do not have HIV. The sooner a person learns about their diagnosis and starts taking ART, the more chances they have to maintain their health for many years and prevent the transmission of the virus to others.

Every year, the country is improving the equipment of laboratories of AIDS centers with modern equipment. In 2021, 15 laboratories of regional AIDS centers received automated PCR equipment with the support of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Modern drugs for the treatment of HIV infection are being actively introduced, laboratory monitoring of the effectiveness of the treatment is being conducted.

Within the framework of the Global Campaign under the slogan "Time for Equality", various events are held in all regions of the country together with NGOs: actions, challenges, trainings aimed at increasing the knowledge of the population about HIV prevention measures, overcoming stigma and discrimination against PLHIV. On December 1, Open Days were organized in all Centers for the Prevention and Control of AIDS.

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