Special Correspondent

The district ranks high in HIV cases

Increase in cases of HIV attributed to influx of pilgrims into Tirupati

Link ART Centres to come up at Madanapalle and Kuppam

TIRUPATI: Andhra Pradesh State AIDS Control and Prevention Council has set up in Chittoor one more Centre for Anti Retro-Viral Therapy (ART) to prevent the spread of HIV.

R.V. Chandravadan, Director of the Council, formally inaugurated the newly constructed premises of the Centre on Thursday.

He said the Chittoor district had a strong case for having the additional ART Centre for many reasons.

Largest district

It is the largest district with 66 mandals and a long border with other districts and States, it also accounted for the highest number of the HIV positive cases.

The reason he cited for the increased presence of the HIV positive cases in the district was the huge influx of pilgrims into Tirupati located in the district, from different parts of the country.

Mr Chandravadan pointed out that this had necessitated setting up of an additional ART Centre to deal with the problem.

Fund sanctioned

Mr. Chandravadan said that besides a Care and Support Centre, link ART centres also would come up at Madanapalle and Kuppam to supplement the efforts of the main centre.

The government had sanctioned Rs. 5 lakh additionally to the ART Centre to augment its facilities.

Plea for facilities

Joint Collector, Chittoor, Suresh Kumar, urged the Director to sanction to the district a CD-4 Count Machine and mobile HIV test and counselling centres.

Among the other participants were ART nodal officer and Medical Superintendent of the District Headquarters Hospital A. Damodar Naidu, Additional District Medical & Health Officer M. Nazeeruddin and Secretary of the Network of Chittoor Positive People C. Munisekhar Reddy.