A drop-in centre for HIV-positive persons will be opened shortly in the city.
The centre, an initiative of the Health Standing Committee of the Kochi Corporation, will function as a short-stay home for infected persons who come to the city for antiretroviral treatment.
Patients who would have to stay near the hospitals for conducting tests could drop in at the centre, said S. Resana, project manager, Centre for Advanced Projects and Solutions. The centre is partnering with the civic body for the project. About 100 HIV-positive persons living in the city limits have been identified. The centre would also offer livelihood solutions for the affected persons and their families, she said. The infected will be trained in income generating programmes such as tailoring, and manufacturing of paper bags and pens.
The rehabilitation programme of the affected persons would be implemented in collaboration with the local Kudumbasree units, said Ms. Resana. The identified persons in the city include sex workers and people infected due to drug use. The affected will be given nutritional food to meet their dietary requirements. Their health conditions would be regularly monitored, she said.
Currently, there is no such facility for the affected persons. The one that was run by the State authorities was closed down for want of funds, she said.
T.K. Ashraf, chairman of the Health Standing Committee, said the civic body had earmarked Rs. 6 lakh for the project from the Poverty Social Fund of the Kerala Sustainable Urban Development Project. The authorities are in search of a building for setting up the centre. It should be set up in close proximity to the district hospital from where the affected persons could receive medical treatment, said Ms. Resana.