Diseases AIDS

Can the Police Force a Person To Have Testing For Aids?

Introduction

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is caused by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). This illness weakens the human immune system and people with AIDS are more likely to get infections are tumors. As time goes on and the disease spreads, the person who has AIDS is more likely to fall ill than ever before. It is important to get tested for HIV as it is transmitted from human to human through sex (anal, vaginal, and oral), through blood transfusion, and contaminated hypodermic needles. It is also transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding. Any other contact with infected bodily fluids, such as blood, semen, vaginal fluid etc. can introduce the virus into ones body. AIDS testing is a preventive measure which makes sure that a person who has AIDS takes care not to pass on the virus to other. Forced AIDS testing is up for debate as testing everyone and immediate treatment of this disease in people who turn out to be HIV positive are can reduce and even eliminate HIV transmission.

History

AIDS was first recognized in 1981 and its cause, HIV, in the early 1980s. Genetic research points towards the late nineteenth century west-central Africa as where AIDS originated. The HIV-1 virus is proved to be transmitted from the Congo chimpanzees to the human population. It then entered from Africa to Haiti and soon in 1969 it entered the United States of America. The factors responsible for this rapid transmission of HIV and its rise to becoming an epidemic are the use of unsterilised injection needles, unsafe sex, and prostitution. Most of the people remained unaware of the knowledge that they were infected by the human immunodeficiency virus until later stages of the diseases and by that time they had unknowingly transmitted the disease to many others.

Features

Everyone, especially sexually active person should be advised to go for AIDS testing. AIDS testing should be made mandatory to establish disease control. While Police should be given the power to guide and advise a person to go for AIDS testing, the police should not force a person until and unless it is absolutely necessary. HIV and AIDS cause death and even thought the virus cannot be completely eradicated, measures can be taken to better the quality and span of life. Additionally, AIDS testing should be offered whenever an individual visits a health facility. Health providers should and the police may counsel a person to get tested. The person should be made aware of the devastating effects of AIDS and how early testing may be beneficial, so that instead of being forced, he or she may go for AIDS testing of his/her own accord. Forceful testing, unless when absolutely necessary, violates human rights no matter how good the intention of the police.

Conclusion

Mandatory and forced HIV testing is also not advantageous as it requires effort, time and money to track down people who may have this disease. Follow-ups are also tough to trace and when a person who was forced for AIDS testing turns out positive for HIV, isolating them for life is not the answer. Sooner or later, people have to be educated to that they can either step up for voluntary and confidential AIDS testing and/or adopt a safe behaviour to limit the spread of the disease. The answer to this debate is that instead of forcing people to get testing, efforts should be made to educate and spread awareness about this damaging disease in order to encourage the people towards what is only best for themselves.

By Sultan Khan, published at 02/20/2012
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