279 HIV-infected babies born in Ukraine in 2006
This year there have already been 279 cases where babies have been born with HIV, These are the disturbing results of a survey carried out by the project “MAMA +”, as of 1 November.
The number of HIV-infected mothers is rising by 20% each year. In the current year their number stood at 416. Of these 77% had been infected through sexual contact. The director of the delegation “Doctors of the World – USA” Hanna Shapoval spoke of this today in Donetsk.
Most HIV-infected women live in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine. The overwhelming majority give their children up (301).
Ms Shapoval explains: “These women are themselves often in difficult circumstances. They are driven out of their homes by their relatives or husbands. They live at railway stations.”
Children born from infected mothers are not, as a rule, even accepted by their relatives.
Yet, according to specialists, modern medicine is capable of enabling such women to give birth to healthy babies. For this womens centres have special preventive procedures.
“The main thing is to get on their register in time”, Ms Shapoval stresses.