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International conference in Moscow to discuss ways of stopping HIV epidemic

April 18, 2018, 8:50 UTC+3 MOSCOW

An international conference on HIV/AIDS will bring together about 3,000 delegates from about fifty countries who will look into the ways of abating the epidemic of the HIV

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MOSCOW, April 18. /TASS/. Tendencies in and challenges posed by the ongoing epidemic of HIV will come into focus at an international conference on HIV/AIDS in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, organizers of the forum said in a press release.

The sessions of the conference will continue through to April 20. They will bring together about 3,000 delegates from about fifty countries who will look into the ways of abating the epidemic of the HIV.

The organizers of the conference are the Joint United Nations Program on HIV and AIDS [UNAIDS] and Russia’s Federal Service for the Oversight of Consumer Protection [Rospotrebnadzor].

"Russia is implementing a large-scale East-European and Central Asian program of technical assistance in the sphere of preventive treatment of, control over and supervision for HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases," the organizers’ press release quoted Rospotrebnadzor director Anna Popova.

She admitted that, in spite of tangible success in diagnostics and treatment, the epidemic of HIV showed no signs of subsiding so far.

Popova said most carriers of the HIV were people in the age group of 30 to 45 years old. "And if you take men in the age group of 35 to 39 years old, more than 3% of them are living with confirmed diagnosis," she said, recalling that the male population in the above-said age group was almost synonymous with the nation’s genetic pool.

"The most saddening fact is that this is not only the age of love but also the age of biggest labor and intellectual activity," Popova said. "This picture is very characteristic of Eastern Europe and Central Asia."

The program of the conference contains several major sections - science and healthcare, civic society, preventive treatment, and assistance to international development.

The experts are expected to dwell extensively on the issues of epidemiological supervision of HIV/AIDS, the problem of combined infections, the embrace of diagnosing and treatment, and drug resistance.

A special aspect to come under review is the activity of nonprofit organizations and the propaganda of HIV denialism - a trend the supporters of which deny the existence of the human immunodeficiency virus.

Popova said that 53% of new cases of HIV registered in 2017 in Russia contracted it during heterosexual contacts and another 43%, in the process of consuming drugs.

"The rest falls on homosexual contacts, blood transfusion and childbearing," she said. "In the latter case, the HIV transmits from the mother to the child if there was no proper preventive treatment.".

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