There are over 16,000 persons with HIV in the Republic of Moldova and only 10,800 of these know their status. More than 5,000 persons with HIV are not officially registered and do not receive the available antiretroviral treatment, being simultaneously a source of infection. The data were presented by the National Public Health Agency in connection with the 2023 International AIDS Candlelight Memorial, IPN reports.
It is noteworthy that the average age of persons found with HIV the last few years is 40 years and the number of cases in rural areas has increased, primary due to heterosexual transmission ways.
According to the Agency, the testing and detection of persons infected with HIV is one of the main intervention measures in response to HIV infection. In this regard, a social campaign entitled “Just Test: For your health and the health of those around” is being conducted until June 15. It includes events and activities to inform about the importance of HIV testing and the benefits of initiating antiretroviral treatment.
In 2022, such treatment in accordance with the guidelines of the WHO and UNAIDS was received by over 30,000 persons from groups with an increased risk of infection, including persons who inject drugs and commercial sex workers. At the moment, 7,857 persons are benefitting from antiretroviral treatment.
The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial, held on the third Sunday of May every year, is a time for everyone to remember the many lives lost to AIDS. It is an opportunity to honor those who dedicated their lives to helping people living with and affected by HIV and continue to mobilize communities in solidarity. This year, the Memorial highlights the stigma and self-stigma experienced by people living with HIV with the theme “Spread Love and Solidarity to Build Stronger Communities”.