'Homosexuals more vulnerable to HIV than heterosexuals'

'Homosexuals more vulnerable to HIV than heterosexuals'

"The chances of HIV infestation among homosexuals is ten times more in comparison to heterosexuals," said Dr John T Ramapuram, Head of department of KMC.

He was addressing the gathering at a programme organised by KMC, Attavar, to distribute KMC Manipal Arogya Suraksha Health cards.

"Transgenders are most vulnerable to HIV infection and thus it is necessary to follow protective measures during physical relations. People having high risk behavior should get themselves tested for HIV," Dr John stressed.

He urged transgenders to consult doctors for any doubts on health complications without any hesitation. "In our country, 98% of HIV cases are due to unsafe sex. Due to advanced research in the field of medicine, better medication is available to increase the life expectancy of HIV infected patients by 40 years," he said.

The ART centre in KMC hospital is functioning under PPP (Public Private Partnership) model and has been providing free HIV tests as per the national guidelines, he added. KMC Manipal General Manager (Insurance) Shripathi said that 25 transgenders are being provided with KMC Manipal Arogya Suraksha health card-a first of its kind initiative in the state.

Every card ensures cashless benefit of upto Rs 50,000 towards treatment, free OPD consultation and 25% concession on laboratory investigations. The benefit is extended by KMC Hospitals in association with Dr G Shankar Trust. Dr Deepak Madi of Medicine department made a presentation on HIV.

KMC Mangaluru Medical Superintendent Dr Anand Venugopal, Dr P Dayanand Pai and P Sathish Pai Government First Grade College, Car street Principal Prof Rajashekhar Hebbar and Kannada professor Dr Nagaveni Manchi were present.