Jul 16, 2014, 6:46 PM
News Code: 2721550
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AIDS control plan targets high-risk population

Tehran, July 16, IRNA -- Iran's 4th National AIDS Control Program, the documentation of which started three years ago, has reached its final stage.

Thursday edition of the English language newspaper Iran Daily will write that the program will specify the role of different organizations and entities in preventing the spread of the disease and reducing its rate.

Abbas Sedaqat, the head of AIDS Control Office, detailed the goals of the program.

"The program will address both high-risk populations, namely injecting drug users, those having unprotected sex, pregnant mothers, children and infants, as its targets," he said.

Sedaqat explained that various organizations and entities are involved in the program that has been tasked with controlling AIDS among the target groups.

The official said the program’s approach regarding general population is raising awareness about the ways in which AIDS spreads.

"Providing general access to health services will help reduce the spread of the disease," he said.

Sedaqat said the program is intended to reduce the risk of HIV infection among drug users in jails.

"Preventing mother-to-child transmission is another goal," he said, noting that the rate of infection through unsafe sex has increased.

Sedaqat had earlier said about 27,416 people have been infected with the virus in Iran and about 89 percent of HIV-positive people are men.

"Patients between the ages of 25 and 34 years constitute the majority of HIV-positive people in Iran," he said.

Using shared needles among addicts is the main cause of HIV infection in Iran (52 percent) followed by unsafe sex (33 percent) and mother-to-child transmission, which accounts for 3.4 percent of infections.

Sedaqat said the rate of HIV transmission through unsafe sex has risen in Iran.