Nagaland, which has more than 12,000 people living with HIV (PLHIV) got its first HIV-1 viral load laboratory.
The laboratory set up in Naga Hospital Authority Kohima (NHAK) will help the patients undergo viral load testing, which is required at least once a year for PLHIV.
Commissioner and Secretary for Health and Family Welfare Department, Y Kikheto Sema, said that India, being a signatory of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 3.3, is committed to ending the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030.
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"Nagaland has approximately 12,290 PLHIV who are on treatment and many more are unreached and untested for HIV. The state has the second-highest HIV-positive cases in the country. "PLHIV have to mandatorily undergo viral load testing at least once a year. If the viral load does not come down, it indicates that the person is not responding to the drug and therefore will need another line of treatment. The laboratory will help doctors provide the correct treatment for PLHIV," he said.
He said the launching of the first HIV-1 viral load laboratory is a significant milestone in ensuring better treatment and care for the PLHIV people. "We had to send blood samples to Mumbai and RIMS Imphal," he said.
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