Sindh promulgates first HIV law

May 22, 2013 Off By Web Desk

KARACHI: Sindh Law Minister Mehmood Mandviwalla has announced that Governor Sindh Dr Ishratul Ibad has promulgated the Sindh HIV/AIDS CONTROL, TREATMENT AND PROTECTION ORDINANCE, 2013.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the minister said that it was the first HIV /AIDS legislation in the region that would help in controlling the spread and transmission of the virus in the province and facilitate treatment for people living with AIDS.

“The important provisions of the law are the protection afforded to the people living with HIV from discrimination in all spheres of life, including healthcare, employment and education,” he said.

Mandviwalla said that Pakistan was facing an expanding concentrated epidemic of AIDS, however the government has continued to respond to this epidemic since 1987 when the first case was revealed in the country, through the National AIDS Control Programme and the Provincial AIDS Control Programmes.

“After the 18th Amendment, HIV has become a provincial subject and therefore it is vital for the province to take urgent measures for the control of the disease.”

He said that the ordinance provides for the formation of the SINDH AIDS Commission, which shall be responsible for the matters relating to the disease and should advise government over issues of prevention, control, care, support and treatment of HIV/AIDS.

The minister said that the ordinance also provides protection against discrimination on the basis of suspected, presumed, alleged or actual HIV status in all spheres of life.

He said that the ordinance paved the way for the establishment of one-window health care facility for the patients.