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28 Nov 2018

Minsk launches World AIDS Day events

MINSK, 28 November (BelTA) – Belarus’ Healthcare Ministry and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) have launched a series of events in Minsk to mark World AIDS Day, BelTA has learned from the UNAIDS Office in Belarus.

The events include seminars, roundtable sessions, training sessions and presentations. They are aimed to motivate people to get tested for HIV. Their motto is “Live Positively – Learn Your HIV Status!” Photo exhibitions and movie screenings will also be part of the campaign. HIV self-testing will be available at the Imaguru business center.

“People in Belarus have an opportunity to get tested not only at healthcare facilities, but also to buy in-home HIV test kits at a drugstore. Belarus introduces modern approaches to preventing and treating the HIV infection, which includes substitution therapy for injecting drug users,” UNAIDS said.

UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations and works closely with global and national partners towards ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Belarus is actively involved in the 90–90–90 campaign implemented by UNAIDS and partners in 2016-2021. The aim of the campaign is to diagnose 90% of all HIV-positive persons, provide antiretroviral therapy for 90% of those diagnosed, and achieve viral suppression for 90% of those treated by 2020.

World AIDS Day was first marked 30 years ago to mourn millions of people who died of the AIDS-related diseases. Many of them lost their lives because they did not have access to medical assistance. Most of the target groups were victims of stigmatization, discrimination and criminalization. In 2017 some 9.4 million people worldwide did not know that they had a potentially fatal disease that could be treated.

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