Ignorance spreads HIV in Developed Nations

Picasso: Tumblers

You question why it is so difficult to combat the spread of HIV in the developed world? I just read this in the Global Development Briefing:

“According to the recent “Person-to-Person” survey conducted by the Indian Association of Parliamentarians on Population and Development of the 250 parliamentarians (157 from the Lok Sabha and 93 from the Rajya Sabha) queried 64 percent incorrectly believe HIV can be spread by sharing clothes with an HIV-positive and 40 percent said thought it can be spread by working with an HIV-positive person; 56 percent think sharing food and utensils increases the risk of acquiring the virus; and 22.8 percent believe it is spread through a toilet seat. The poll finds that 46 percent of Indian lawmakers are unaware that an HIV-positive mother can transmit the infection to her infant. According to UNAIDS, with 5.7 million people infected, India surpassed South Africa to become the country with the largest number of people carrying the HIV virus. In South Africa, prominent politicians also demonstrate a basic misunderstanding. President Tabo Mbeki has insisted that HIV does not necessarily lead to full blown AIDs; or the link has not been clearly established; former Deputy President Jacob Zuma “protected” himself after having sex with a HIV-positive woman by taking a shower afterwards; Minister of Health Manto Tshabalala-Tsimang favors the consumption of garlic and African potato over treatment with antiretroviral drugs.”


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