World's AIDS Day at International Management Institute

December 17, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Education News
December 17, 2006 - On 30th November, the eve of World AIDS Day, a team of volunteer doctors from Fortis Hospital, New Delhi visited International Management Institute (IMI), New Delhi to address the students of the Post Graduate Programme in Human Resource Management (PGPHRM) batch on the epidemic deadly disease HIV/AIDS.

The session began with the doctors explaining the meaning and underlying difference between HIV and AIDS. They acknowledged that one of the primary health concerns of India and the world today is the deadly disease called AIDS- Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, afflicting a mammoth 40 million of the world’s population in 2005, and around 4.5 million Indians, leading to 2.5 million deaths (reported by UNAIDS).

With no cure yet for AIDS, the axiom “prevention is better than cure” was repeatedly highlighted while emphasizing the responsibilities of a society. The lack of understanding and awareness of the disease has resulted in exclusion of HIV positive people from the mainstream of society thereby killing their hopes and aspirations. Our society needs to understand that HIV patients are like any other normal, healthy human beings since it may take several years, if at all, for the virus to degenerate into AIDS. During this stage, patients need our acceptance, and understanding and not retribution.

The changing attitudes of parents and schools in their desire to educate children on HIV/AIDS has made a huge difference. The doctors stressed the import of introducing sex-education at school level to arm the youth with the necessary information to prevent contracting HIV. The importance of safe sex was emphasized as were the dangers of transmission of the disease using common needles. According to the doctors, using sterilized needles and disposable syringes was crucial in prevention. The doctors also enlightened the students about the various modes of transmission of HIV, thus dispelling the numerous myths surrounding the disease.

Using the platform of IMI to ‘educate’ students will have tremendous direct and indirect benefits in addressing this problem. The interactive discussion between the students of PGPHRM, IMI and the doctors of Fortis Hospital was interspersed with an array of questions which cleared many doubts. The students participated in a group activity to understand the causes of HIV infection, classifying them into “no risk”, “low risk” and “high risk” category.

The session ended by the doctors simultaneously quoting, “spread the word, not the virus”.

Sidharth Vashisht
Cultural Secretary
(PGPHRM, International Management Institute)