China News Service, Beijing, December 1st, title: Interview with UNAIDS Chargé d'affaires in China: Discrimination can be eliminated by not being shy about talking

  Author Bo Wenwen

  December 1 this year is the 33rd World AIDS Day.

Zhou Kai, the Chargé d’affaires of the UNAIDS China Office, said in an exclusive interview with a reporter from China News Agency that the biggest obstacle to AIDS prevention and treatment is discrimination. Only when people are not shy to talk and pass on correct knowledge can they eliminate HIV infections. Discrimination.

"Don't be shy to talk"

  "The biggest obstacle affecting the prevention and treatment of AIDS is discrimination." Zhou Kai said that because of discrimination, people living with HIV or high-risk groups dare not talk about, go to tests, and receive treatment and other related services, which increases the spread of HIV. Dangerous.

"Anti-discrimination is a very long-lasting topic and requires continuous and uninterrupted work."

  According to Zhou Kai, the UNAIDS China Office has been carrying out anti-discrimination campaigns targeting the general public, high-risk groups and young students.

Every year, "Zero Discrimination Day" (March 1), International AIDS Candlelight Day (third Sunday in May) and World AIDS Day will carry out related thematic publicity activities.

  Zhou Kai said that publicity activities often invite goodwill ambassadors and other people with social influence to mobilize more people's attention and participation.

In addition, there will be a "walking into the campus" event, through dialogue and exchanges with university students through goodwill ambassadors, so that more young students can participate in the promotion of zero discrimination against AIDS.

  "Don't be shy to talk." Zhou Kai appealed that only when we pay more attention, talk more, and pass on the correct knowledge, can we eliminate discrimination against people living with HIV and create an environment that is very conducive to AIDS prevention and control.

Leverage the power of community organizations

  "Discrimination is multifaceted, not only from the outside world, but some discrimination comes from the infected person themselves, which is a kind of self-discrimination." Zhou Kai emphasized that at this time, it is necessary to use the power of community organizations.

  Community organizations refer to those organizations that are led by their service targets and responsible for the groups where the service targets belong.

According to Zhou Kai, in AIDS prevention and treatment, community organizations are mostly composed of people living with HIV, gay men and men who have sex with men, drug users, sex workers, and transgender groups, and they provide services to high-risk groups.

In addition, there are also social organizations composed of volunteers.

Most of the community organizations are registered with civil affairs departments or health-related departments to legally carry out AIDS prevention and control work.

  "We will work with community organizations to carry out capacity building training activities. Through exchanges, training, and communication with infected people, let them raise their awareness of discrimination, this is actually a very effective means to eliminate self-discrimination." Zhou Kai said .

  “Due to the existence of discrimination, it is difficult to reach people at high risk of AIDS. Therefore, we reach out to these people through the participation of community groups and convey information to them accurately and in a timely manner.” Zhou Kai said that China is supporting community organizations Participating in AIDS prevention is particularly well done. China’s “Social Organizations Participating in AIDS Prevention Fund” has supported thousands of organizations to carry out publicity and education, preventive interventions, testing and consultation, and care and assistance for infected people, etc. jobs.

What is "U=U"?

  Zhou Kai believes that increasing people’s understanding of AIDS prevention is also the key to eliminating discrimination.

"With the development of science, there are now many good methods that can effectively prevent the spread of HIV, such as the concept of'U=U'."

  "U=U", that is, "Undetectable equals Untransmittable" means that when an HIV-infected person persists in receiving antiretroviral treatment, the viral load in the body lasts for more than 6 months At an undetectable level, HIV will not be transmitted through sexual contact.

This conclusion is based on medical empirical experience and supported by multiple medical academic research institutes.

Zhou Kai said, therefore, there is no need to be afraid of HIV, nor should it be stigmatized and discriminated against.

  Zhou Kai also emphasized that women infected with HIV can give birth to healthy babies.

"If the mother continues to take antiretroviral drugs during pregnancy and breastfeeding, it can almost eliminate the risk of mother-to-child transmission."

  “As the new crown pneumonia epidemic has gradually stabilized in China, services such as testing, consultation, treatment and care for the infected and key populations led by community organizations have quickly resumed. UNAIDS believes that with the support of national policies, community organizations With the full participation of people, in a good environment that respects human rights and protects vulnerable groups, if everyone can contribute their own meager strength, we can overcome the two epidemics of COVID-19 and AIDS." Zhou Kai said, let each of us use practical Action, in response to the theme of this year's AIDS Day, "Join hands to prevent and fight AIDS, and share health responsibilities!"