Monday, February 8, 2010

Pregnant but HIV positive

 The other day I received a call from a Gynaecologist of a nearby Hospital.

'I have an ante-natal [pregnancy] patient who is HIV positive. Should I send her to you now or after delivery?'

The doctor was asking me.

I was happy that she called to inform me, but was disappointed with her question. I had spend some effort as an HIV/AIDS trainer to make doctors aware that pregnant women need anti-HIV treatment to prevent the birth of a 'positive' child. I am not sure whether the above-mentioned doctor attended the training, but I expected her to know the importance of ART [anti HIV treatment] in pregnancy.

'You should send her to me immediately. She needs treatment to prevent the birth of a 'positive' child.' I replied.

The next day the patient came with her husband. I explained the situation to them in detail and asked them to attend the Govt ART center as early as possible. I telephoned the ART Medical Officer about this patient and fixed a suitable time for the patient to reach the center.

That lady will get the treatment, which will greatly reduce the chance of the birth of a 'positive' child from about 40% to less than 5%.

All pregnant females should be tested for HIV and if found positive should immediately receive treatment so that we can eliminate the chance of birth an HIV positive child