Opinion: Fighting The Twin Epidemic Of HIV And COVID-19 – Securing Food And Nutritional Access

Opinion: Fighting The Twin Epidemic Of HIV And COVID-19 – Securing Food And Nutritional Access

The COVID-19 and existing HIV pandemic are adversely impacting people living with HIV at every level, but more significantly in the areas of food and nutrition
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Opinion: Fighting The Twin Epidemic Of HIV And COVID-19 - Securing Food And Nutritional AccessPeople living with HIV constitute one of the most vulnerable communities globally

In a world disrupted by the Coronavirus pandemic, the World AIDS Day 20200, observed every year on 1st December, comes at a critical moment for millions of people living with or at risk of HIV. The pandemic has knocked the wind out of literally everything, including the ongoing work that a range of stakeholders have been doing to end AIDS and create an equal life for People Living with HIV (PLHIV).

COVID-19 is threatening the progress that the world has made in health and development over the past 20 years, including the gains we have made against HIV, UNAIDS Executive Director Winnie Byanyima said in her message to mark the day.

Also Read: India Needs Stronger Focus On Addressing Mother To Child Transmission Of HIV, Says Winnie Byanyima, the Executive Director, UNAIDS

Colliding Epidemics Of HIV And COVID-19

The intersection of the COVID pandemic and the unprecedented containment measures in its wake have had a devastating social and economic impact, especially on the marginalised and vulnerable groups. PLHIV constitute one of the most vulnerable communities globally. Highly discriminated, they are also often left behind due to lack of nutritional, medical, and support services.

The COVID-19 and existing HIV pandemic are adversely impacting PLHIV at every level, but more significantly in the areas of food and nutrition.

Opinion Fighting The Twin Epidemic Of HIV And COVID-19 - Securing Food And Nutritional Access
Anu (name changed), a commercial sex worker and a high-risk group for HIV, has seen her earning disappear due to the Coronavirus pandemic, leaving her at risk of hunger

HIV weakens nutritional standing by undermining the immune system and disrupting nutritional intake or absorption. Malnutrition can exacerbate the effects of HIV and hasten AIDS-related illnesses in PLHIV. Energy requirements of adults living with HIV are 10–30 per cent higher, while children living with HIV need 50–100 per cent more than their counterparts. Several studies have been done for assessing the importance of knowledge, attitude, and practices in Antiretroviral Therapy (ART), but only a handful of them have nutrition as the focus.

Also Read: World AIDS Day 2020: Five Things To Know About HIV Infection

Focusing On Those At Risk

Globally, India has the third-largest population of PLHIV and the second-highest number of COVID-19 cases. This necessitates working with the most-at-risk groups in an even more focused way.

Though far from achieving the ambitious target of ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic by 2030, India has shown significant progress over the last few decades.

Structurally discriminated groups, like the transgender community, are reeling under the dual impact of the pandemic and social distancing. Transgenders in India work as daily-wage earners, who also engage in begging and sex work. Most of them do not have basic identity and entitlement documents, leaving them outside the coverage of government social security schemes like food rations and pension.

According to surveys conducted recently, already low incomes of sex workers have plummeted during the lockdown, forcing them to borrow money, leaving them vulnerable to further exploitation. Most of them fear starvation and are seeking alternative livelihoods.

Also Read: World AIDS Day 2020: A Day Of Solidarity To Prevent HIV And Support People Living With It

India’s apex Supreme Court recently directed state governments to provide dry rations to sex workers identified by the National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) and district legal authorities even if they do not have identity documents. In a related move, NACO has introduced flexibility in dispensation of ART drugs for 3–6 months depending of the need.

There is an urgent need to focus on food and nutrition for PLHIV as an integral part of HIV treatment and care package.

WFP India is helping a front-line NGO in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, to identify and provide food assistance to around 20,000 vulnerable households, which include at-risk groups such as transgenders, male and female sex workers. The groups were identified with support of local civil society groups, along with the state AIDS control society.

India’s Public Distribution System, one of the largest food safety nets in the world, is the cornerstone of the country’s food and nutrition security. The at-risk groups and PLHIV need to be comprehensively covered through the targeted components of the food distribution schemes. Targeting and accessibility built at the community levels through the participation of civil society groups and tracking could help increase coverage of these groups across the country.

Also Read: World AIDS Day 2020: A Look At How HIV-AIDS Has Been Impacting The World

Call For Global Solidarity

The theme for the World AIDS Day this year is ‘global solidarity and resilient services’, calling on global leaders and citizens to rally to maintain essential HIV services including food and nutrition during COVID 19 and beyond.

The world has made significant progress since the late 1990s, but HIV remains a major global public health issue. And like many other major health issues, it faces additional challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic.

HIV prevention, testing, treatment, and care services are all being disrupted particularly in countries with fragile health systems. The breakdown in essential HIV services due to COVID-19 is threatening lives. Any slowing down in the provision of these services will leave many vulnerable populations at greater risk of HIV infection and AIDS-related deaths.

Nevertheless, all over the world, health workers and community representatives are doing their utmost to keep services going, adopting innovative ways to overcome disruptions in services caused by COVID-19.

It is important to stay focused on the food and nutrition of vulnerable groups with their livelihoods compromised or destroyed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also Read: World AIDS Day 2020: Odisha’s Sand Artists Call For Global Solidarity, Shared Responsibility

Note: The article was originally published on WFP India’s website and reproduced here with permission 

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

9,87,19,695Cases
4,21,73,757Active
5,44,25,394Recovered
21,20,544Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 192 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 9,87,19,695 and 21,20,544 have died; 4,21,73,757 are active cases and 5,44,25,394 have recovered as on January 24, 2021 at 4:12 am.

India

1,06,54,533 14849Cases
1,84,408 -1254Active
1,03,16,786 15948Recovered
1,53,339 155Deaths
In India, there are 1,06,54,533 confirmed cases including 1,53,339 deaths. The number of active cases is 1,84,408 and 1,03,16,786 have recovered as on January 24, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State & District Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
DistrictCases
Mumbai45,478
Thane13,660
Pune9,920
Mumbai Suburban5,363
Aurangabad1,974
Nashik1,575
Raigad1,462
Palghar1,421
Solapur1,291
Jalgaon1,039
Akola757
Nagpur692
Kolhapur646
Satara629
Ratnagiri350
Amravati291
Dhule228
Hingoli208
Jalna201
Ahmednagar190
Nanded176
Yavatmal150
Sangli145
Latur139
Osmanabad125
Sindhudurg114
Buldhana88
Parbhani78
gondia69
Beed54
Nandurbar42
Gadchiroli42
Bhandara41
Chandrapur32
Washim13
Wardha11

20,06,354 2,697

45,093 1,053

19,10,521 3,694

50,740 56

DistrictCases
Udupi1,176
Kalaburagi669
Yadgir538
Bengaluru Urban529
Raichur369
Mandya346
Belagavi337
Bidar219
Hassan205
Davangere204
Vijayapura201
Dakshina Kannada179
Chikkaballapura149
Mysuru107
Bagalkote103
Uttara Kannada95
Shivamogga67
Dharwad61
Ballari60
Gadag45
Bengaluru Rural40
Tumakuru36
Kolar29
Haveri24
Chikkamagaluru19
Chitradurga14
Koppal5
Kodagu4
Ramanagara3
Chamarajanagara0

9,35,478 902

7,361 357

9,15,924 542

12,193 3

DistrictCases
Kurnool795
Krishna557
Guntur511
Anantapur428
East Godavari356
Chittoor319
Sri Potti Sriramulu Nell*296
Y.S.R.205
West Godavari199
Srikakulam183
Prakasam104
Visakhapatnam103
Vizianagaram23

8,86,852 158

1,473 15

8,78,232 172

7,147 1

DistrictCases
Kannur357
Kasaragod333
Palakkad224
Malappuram119
Kollam118
Thrissur106
Thiruvananthapuram104
Pathanamthitta98
Kozhikode90
Alappuzha76
Kottayam73
Ernakulam60
Idukki40
Wayanad36

8,84,242 6,960

72,278 1,654

8,08,377 5,283

3,587 23

DistrictCases
Chennai23,324
Chengalpattu1,314
Thiruvallur774
Villupuram509
Kanchipuram503
Tiruvannamalai496
Cuddalore477
Ariyalur444
Tirunelveli433
Tuticorin333
Kallakurichi324
Madurai322
Salem258
Coimbatore188
Virudhunagar185
Dindigul175
Perambalur133
Ranipet133
Thanjavur130
Theni129
Tiruchirappalli119
Ramanathapuram119
Tiruppur116
Kanniyakumari110
Tenkasi103
Nagapattinam99
Karur88
Namakkal83
Erode75
Vellore71
Thiruvarur67
Pudukkottai53
Sivaganga46
Tirupathur45
Krishnagiri43
The Nilgiris17
Dharmapuri15

8,34,171 586

4,984 89

8,16,878 673

12,309 2

DistrictCases
North West5,463
Central4,817
West4,768
New Delhi3,405
North3,059
East2,472
South East2,446
South West2,391
South2,329
North East1,914
Shahdara1,580

6,33,739 197

1,880 180

6,21,060 367

10,799 10

DistrictCases
Gautam Buddha Nagar1,119
Agra933
Ghaziabad794
Meerut504
Lucknow386
Saharanpur298
Kanpur Nagar286
Moradabad252
Varanasi243
Hapur225
Aligarh215
Basti214
Amethi206
Rampur203
Jaunpur194
Firozabad190
Barabanki168
Gorakhpur166
Bulandshahr166
Siddharth Nagar159
Ghazipur159
Bijnor157
Deoria143
Azamgarh138
Sant Kabeer Nagar132
Mathura129
Ayodhya120
Muzaffarnagar117
Sambhal116
Sultanpur97
Ambedkar Nagar92
Maharajganj85
Amroha80
Rae Bareli78
Bahraich73
Kheri72
Kannauj69
Baghpat68
Kushi Nagar67
Bhadohi60
Ballia60
Gonda59
Etah52
Hardoi49
Balrampur49
Mau48
Mainpuri46
Etawah46
Hathras43
Unnao42
Jalaun41
Jhansi41
Shamli40
Chandauli38
Auraiya37
Farrukhabad36
Sitapur32
Prayagraj30
Banda27
Shahjahanpur25
Shravasti23
Budaun23
Mirzapur22
Bareilly17
Kasganj16
Pratapgarh15
Pilibhit15
Sonbhadra10
Kaushambi6
Kanpur Dehat4
Chitrakoot4
Lalitpur3
Hamirpur3
Mahoba3
Fatehpur3

5,98,445 319

7,330 198

5,82,506 513

8,609 4

DistrictCases
Kolkata2,777
Howrah1,435
24 Paraganas North1,031
Hooghly604
24 Paraganas South281
Maldah235
Dinajpur Uttar216
Coochbehar210
Birbhum206
Medinipur West159
Medinipur East153
Nadia139
Purba Bardhaman130
Murshidabad125
Bankura116
Darjeeling97
Jalpaiguri88
Paschim Bardhaman70
Purulia66
Dinajpur Dakshin50
Alipurduar39
Kalimpong18
Jhargram9

5,67,714 410

6,396 74

5,51,211 474

10,107 10

DistrictCases
Ganjam581
Jajapur322
Khordha238
Baleshwar190
Kendrapara164
Cuttack155
Bhadrak137
Balangir129
Puri103
Sundargarh102
Jagatsinghapur91
Nayagarh86
Mayurbhanj73
Nuapada69
Gajapati61
Dhenkanal36
Boudh34
Kendujhar34
Deogarh33
Kalahandi33
Sonepur29
Kandhamal28
Anugul26
Malkangiri20
Bargarh16
Koraput16
Sambalpur16
Jharsuguda8
Nabarangpur2
Rayagada2

3,34,150 130

1,284 76

3,30,962 205

1,904 1

DistrictCases
Jaipur2,177
Jodhpur1,748
Udaipur724
Bharatpur563
Kota503
Nagaur500
Ajmer379
Dungarpur374
Pali352
Jhalawar329
Bhilwara250
Sikar231
Chittorgarh188
Tonk171
Jalore164
Rajsamand140
Sirohi130
Bikaner112
Banswara91
Alwar90
Churu81
Jhunjhunu64
Dausa61
Dholpur60
Baran59
Jaisalmer53
Barmer34
Hanumangarh31
SawaiMadhopur26
Karauli17
Pratapgarh14
Ganganagar8
Bundi5

3,16,485 203

3,448 271

3,10,279 472

2,758 2

DistrictCases
Bilaspur100
Korba100
Mungeli87
Baloda Bazar85
Jashpur77
Janjgir-Champa56
Mahasamund54
Rajnandgaon52
Kabirdham52
Raigarh47
Raipur46
Balod41
Korea39
Durg31
Bemetara21
Kanker19
Balrampur17
Surguja14
Gariyaband10
Surajpur9
Dhamtari6
Bijapur2
Bastar2
Dantewada0
Kondagaon0
Narayanpur0
Sukma0

2,96,326 377

5,040 268

2,87,677 637

3,609 8

DistrictCases
Hyderabad2,475
Ranga Reddy183
Suryapet87
Jagitial77
Nizamabad76
MedchalMalkajgiri75
Mancherial43
YadadriBhuvanagiri40
Jogulamba Gadwal40
Vikarabad40
Nalgonda33
Warangal Urban32
Mahabubnagar30
Sangareddy26
Khammam26
Adilabad22
Nirmal21
Karimnagar17
RajannaSircilla16
Medak11
Kamareddy11
Mahabubabad10
Jayashankar Bhupalapally9
Nagarkurnool8
Kumuram Bheem Asifabad8
Jangoan8
Siddipet7
Peddapalli5
Bhadradri Kothagudem5
Warangal Rural4
Mulugu3
Narayanpet3
Wanaparthy1

2,93,253 197

3,389 180

2,88,275 376

1,589 1

DistrictCases
Gurugram2,950
Faridabad867
Sonipat404
Rohtak145
Palwal120
Jhajjar114
Karnal104
Hisar98
Ambala93
Panipat78
Nuh68
Bhiwani60
Rewari56
Kurukshetra55
Sirsa50
Kaithal48
Mahendragarh47
CharkiDadri43
Panchkula39
Fatehabad38
Jind38
Yamunanagar19

2,67,075 136

1,559 26

2,62,507 158

3,009 4

DistrictCases
Ahmadabad17,125
Surat2,311
Vadodara1,555
Gandhinagar410
Mahesana159
Banas Kantha147
Bhavnagar146
Rajkot135
Arvalli134
Mahisagar125
Anand107
PanchMahals107
Patan105
SabarKantha101
Kachchh99
Kheda98
Jamnagar63
Bharuch56
Botad55
Surendranagar55
Valsad47
GirSomnath45
Dohad43
Chhotaudepur37
Naysari35
Junagadh31
Narmada25
DevbhumiDwarka22
Amreli16
Porbandar11
Tapi6
Dang5
Morbi4

2,58,687 423

4,960 280

2,49,352 702

4,375 1

DistrictCases
Patna279
Bhagalpur266
Rohtas256
Khagaria253
Begusarai243
Madhubani199
Munger188
Jehanabad178
Katihar175
Darbhanga143
Samastipur139
Siwan139
PurbiChamparan138
Purnia135
Banka134
Buxar134
Nalanda123
Gopalganj123
Nawada122
Sheikhpura118
Gaya115
Kaimur (bhabua)105
Bhojpur103
Saran101
Muzaffarpur96
Saharsa88
Supaul87
Vaishali87
Madhepura82
Kishanganj75
Aurangabad75
Sitamarhi73
Lakhisarai72
Araria68
Pashchim Champaran57
Arwal52
Jamui47
Sheohar20

2,58,638 125

2,599 83

2,54,563 204

1,476 4

DistrictCases
Indore3,839
Bhopal1,880
Ujjain799
Burhanpur351
Neemuch319
Jabalpur276
East Nimar266
Sagar228
Gwalior211
Khargone196
Dewas140
Dhar132
Mandsaur112
Morena109
Bhind87
Raisen71
Barwani60
Ratlam51
Rewa39
Shajapur39
Hoshangabad37
Vidisha37
Chhatarpur35
Betul35
Rajgarh31
Dindori29
Sheopur26
Damoh26
Satna24
Anuppur22
Panna20
Tikamgarh18
Sidhi17
Narsinghpur17
Chhindwara16
Agar Malwa15
Mandla15
Shivpuri15
Jhabua14
Shandol14
Singrauli13
Ashoknagar13
Datia12
Sehore12
Umaria10
Balaghat9
Guna8
Harda4
Alirajpur3
Katni3
Seoni2
Niwari0

2,53,405 291

4,310 169

2,45,309 454

3,786 6

DistrictCases
Kamrup Metro276
Golaghat203
Nagaon143
Hojai89
Dima Hasao86
Karimganj85
Tinsukia84
Cachar80
Dibrugarh61
Hailakandi57
Lakhimpur57
Marigaon50
Dhemaji47
Kamrup42
Kokrajhar37
Dhubri30
Charaideo29
Barpeta28
Udalguri28
Sonitpur27
Jorhat24
Nalbari23
Darrang20
Sivasagar20
Goalpara19
Biswanath16
Baksa14
KarbiAnglong13
Bongaigaon12
Chirang6
West KarbiAnglong5
South SalmaraMancachar4
Majuli2

2,16,976 19

2,407 75

2,13,492 94

1,077

DistrictCases
Amritsar485
Jalandhar297
Ludhiana293
Tarn Taran163
Gurdaspur154
Hoshiarpur140
S.A.S Nagar137
Patiala132
Sangrur107
Shahid Bhagat Singh Nagar (Nawanshahr)99
Pathankot86
Rupnagar (Ropar)74
Faridkot74
Sri Muktsar Sahib71
Moga65
Bathinda60
Fatehgarh Sahib57
Fazilka53
Firozepur50
Kapurthala44
Mansa31
Barnala25

1,71,733 211

2,293 31

1,63,887 232

5,553 10

DistrictCases
Anantnag395
Srinagar300
Kulgam295
Baramulla271
Shopian255
Kupwara231
Bandipora175
Udhampur155
Ramban151
Jammu138
Budgam110
Pulwama108
Kathua53
Rajouri39
Ganderbal37
Poonch35
Doda27
Reasi26
Samba25
Kishtwar10
Mirpur0
Muzaffarabad0

1,23,946 94

1,103 5

1,20,914 88

1,929 1

DistrictCases
East Singhbum170
Ranchi148
Hazaribagh110
Garhwa80
Ramgarh75
Koderma58
Simdega48
Dhanbad32
Gumla28
Palamu27
West Singhbhum21
SaraikelaKharsawan20
Giridih19
Bokaro16
Latehar14
Khunti10
Lohardaga8
Deoghar5
Dumka5
Pakur4
Jamtara2
Godda2
Chatra1
Sahebganj0

1,18,232 78

878 100

1,16,293 177

1,061 1

DistrictCases
Dehradun370
Nainital323
Tehri Garhwal110
Haridwar94
Udam Singh Nagar83
Almora71
Champawat45
Pithoragarh43
Chamoli36
PauriGarhwal36
Bageshwar31
Rudraprayag30
Uttar Kashi24

95,586 122

1,733 62

92,224 184

1,629

DistrictCases
Hamirpur117
Kangra105
Una41
Solan32
Chamba29
Bilaspur21
Mandi21
Sirmaur11
Shimla10
Kullu4
Kinnaur2
Lahaul And Spiti0

57,189 27

469 47

55,749 73

971 1

DistrictCases
South Goa69
North Goa57

52,867 85

873 19

51,233 63

761 3

DistrictCases
Pondicherry111
Mahe4
Karaikal2
Yanam0

38,830 36

302 8

37,884 27

644 1

DistrictCases
Dhalai196
Sepahijala174
Gomati74
South Tripura53
Unakoti49
West Tripura45
Khowai24
North Tripura14

33,345 1

35 1

32,919

391

DistrictCases
Churachandpur32
Kangpokpi26
Imphal West21
Thoubal18
Imphal East10
Tengnoupal9
Bishnupur7
Senapati6
Chandel5
Kamjong5
Ukhrul4
Jiribam3
Pherzawl3
Kakching2
Tamenglong2
Noney1

28,970 17

196 1

28,405 18

369

DistrictCases
Chandigarh313

20,686 22

127 10

20,226 31

333 1

DistrictCases
Changlang31
Papum Pare8
Lohit3
Namsai2
West Siang1
East Siang1
Upper Siang1
Tawang1
PakkeKessang1
West Kameng0
Upper Subansiri0
Tirap0
Siang0
Shi Yomi0
Anjaw0
Lower Subansiri0
Lower Dibang Valley0
Longding0
Leparada0
KurungKumey0
KraDaadi0
Kamle0
East Kameng0
Dibang Valley0
Lower Siang0

16,818 1

37 0

16,725 1

56

DistrictCases
East Khasi Hills22
West Garo Hills5
South West Garo Hills4
North Garo Hills1
West Jaintia Hills1
West Khasi Hills1
East Garo Hills0
East Jaintia Hills0
Ribhoi0
South Garo Hills0
South West Khasi Hills0

13,727 4

122 6

13,459 10

146

DistrictCases
Dimapur20
Mon8
Kohima7
Kiphire3
Tuensang3
Peren2
Phek1
Longleng0
Mokokchung0
Wokha0
Zunheboto0

12,076 4

104 0

11,884 4

88

DistrictCases
Kargil77
LehLadakh43

9,675 2

62 6

9,484 8

129

DistrictCases
East District3
South District3
North District0
West District0

6,068 5

134 6

5,802 10

132 1

DistrictCases
South Andamans33
Nicobars1
North And Middle Andaman1

4,993 1

24 1

4,907

62

DistrictCases
Kolasib11
Aizawl10
Mamit8
Lawngtlai2
Lunglei2
Saitual1
Champhai0
Hnahthial0
Khawzawl0
Saiha0
Serchhip0

4,351 2

58 0

4,284 2

9

DistrictCases
Dadra And Nagar Haveli20

3,394

10 0

3,382

2

DistrictCases
Lakshadweep District0

57 7

57 7

0

0

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