The government’s aim on HIV/AIDS is zero stigma, zero deaths and zero new cases but despite these tough words the number of new infections each year has been rising in Singapore. In 2012 a record 469 people were newly diagnosed with HIV, compared to 359 in 2006. What is of particular concern is that the majority of new infections are diagnosed at late-stage HIV infection. In fact, since Singapore’s first case in 1985, nearly 1600 people have died from the disease and just under 5800 have been infected. Sex is the main form of infection in Singapore with heterosexuals accounting for 47 per cent of the cases and homosexuals 45 percent . Since the beginning of the epidemic almost 70 million people worldwide have been infected with the HIV virus and about 35 million have died of AIDS. At the end of 2011, 34 million people were living with HIV, although the burden of the epidemic varies from country to country. In Singapore, The Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Health Promotion Board (HPB) urge individuals to protect themselves from HIV infection and its effects by following the principles of ‘ABCD’: (A) abstinence, (B) being faithful, (C) correct and consistent use of condoms and (D) early detection. These principles are relevant for everyone regardless of the risk group they belong to. So what is going wrong? Why isn’t the message getting through? Have there been too few campaigns or too many? And what about the government’s message of zero stigma? How well are HIV victims accepted in the community? Can they get jobs and do their colleagues accept them? Host: Kenneth Liang Speakers : Dr. George Bishop, Susan Solomon, Avin Tan, Terry Lim, Joanne Sim, James Foong, Dr. Leong Hoe Nam
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Avin Tan is Singapore’s second person living with HIV (PLHIV), after Paddy Chew who passed away...
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