NEW DELHI: In a breakthrough, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has endorsed the use of self-testing for HIV, empowering people to know their HIV status in privacy.
Ahead of the International AIDS Day on December 1, the WHO released new guidelines on HIV self-testing aiming to improve access and uptake of HIV diagnosis.
“Millions of people with HIV are still missing out on life-saving treatment, which can also prevent HIV transmission to others,” said WHO Director-General Margaret Chan in a news release.
Adding that “HIV self-testing should open the door for many more people to know their HIV status and find out how to get treatment and access prevention services”.
According to the WHO lack of an HIV diagnosis is a major obstacle to implementing the Organisation’s recommendation that everyone with HIV should be offered antiretroviral therapy (ART).
The report says that more than 18 million people with HIV are currently on ART, but an equal number of people are still unable to access treatment, with many being unaware of their HIV positive status.
“Today, 40 per cent of all people with HIV (over 14 million) remain unaware of their status,” it added....