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Message from President on World Aids Day – 1st December, 2012

Islamabad, December 01, 2012 (PPI-OT): AIDS, the world’s leading infectious killer, has reportedly claimed more than 25 million lives over the past three decades around the world. The World AIDS Day being observed today is a reminder for everyone for not only raising greater awareness about the disease but also to help those afflicted with this disease.

This calls for stepping up efforts by all concerned, may that be the Governments, the health practitioners, NGOs or common citizens to ensure that those suffering from it are provided unhindered access to diagnosis and treatment without any discrimination. Indeed it is a wakeup call for all to act decisively and urgently.

Medical research has shown that HIV cannot be contracted through routine daily contacts such as shaking hands and sharing of food or water. Unfortunately, however, the stigma surrounding HIV has contributed to discrimination against the patients and inhibited people from undergoing regular medical check-up for timely diagnosis.

The theme of World Aid Day this year is zero discrimination against patients suffering from HIV. On this day therefore let us fight any discrimination against people with HIV and encourage people to undergo necessary diagnostic procedures for timely diagnosis and treatment.

Equally important in the fight against HIV and AIDS is access to the needed information about preventive measures and the available treatment programs. It requires concerted efforts involving the parents, teachers, religious scholars, media, and indeed every segment of society to work together and thereby save millions from the consequences of this disease.

On this day, I also call upon the international community to help the developing and under-developed world in reducing the risks of this disease by sharing knowledge and expertise and in assisting the Governments in accessing the people of the far flung areas. As HIV is an issue of global concern it is important that the international community specially focuses on Aids prevention and cure in the less developed countries.

I am confident that our federal and provincial governments are cognizant of their responsibilities to work towards prevention and cure of the HIV and would continue to focus on enhancing the capabilities of the health care professionals to meet this challenge.

I also urge government institutions, civil society, philanthropists, and NGOs and every citizen to refuse to perpetuate the stigma surrounding HIV in workplaces and communities and thereby help make Pakistan and the whole world HIV and AIDS free.

For more information, contact:
Haji Ahmed Malik
Principal Information Officer
Press Information Department (PID)
Tel: +9251 925 2323 and +9251 925 2324
Fax: +9251 925 2325 and +9251 925 2326
Email: piopid@gmail.com

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