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Officials test pregnant women at risk of HIV

Fewer than 2,000 pregnant women among an estimated 400,000 women nationwide so far this year were at high risk of HIV infection, health officials said at a workshop on HIV transmission from mothers to children in the capital yesterday.

Tuon Sovanna, acting program manager of the National Maternal and Child Health Centre, said that of the 409,000 women nationwide estimated to be pregnant this year, only 1,636 were considered at high risk of contracting the virus.

“The results achieved by all the provinces over a nine-month period in 2011 showed that 50 per cent of pregnant women received HIV testing, with 45.1 per cent of those tested receiving their test results,” she said.

Tuon Sovanna added that 55.1 per cent of pregnant women in the high-risk group tested positive for HIV during their pregnancy and 37.7 per cent of HIV-positive pregnant women had received treatment.

One of the Kingdom’s Mill-ennium Development Goal targets includes reducing pediatric HIV to fewer than five per cent of children born to HIV-infected mothers.

“I want give the recommendation to all of you . . . to help pregnant women with HIV by delivering medicine to them in order to prevent infection to their children,” Eng Huot, secretary of state at the Health Ministry, said.

He added that there were 1,207 health centres nationwide offering services to prevent the HIV transmission from mothers to their children.

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