Essay on Hiv / Aids And Hepatitis B And C

Essay on Hiv / Aids And Hepatitis B And C

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As we know, drug addiction is a problem in the United States. In the beginning of the 1980s the United States was not only dealing with the drug war, but a new mystery outbreak of disease, now known as HIV/AIDS and hepatitis B and C. The rapid outbreak of blood-borne related diseases (i.e., HIV/AIDs and hepatitis B and C) among drug users who injected, led to the conclusion that this mysterious new illness transmitted through contamination of blood and other body fluids. Subsequently, syringe access laws were created to provide free, if not affordable access to sterile syringes in exchange for the used syringes. This essay will discuss the history of HIV and how it led to syringe exchange programs.
According to the American Cancer Society, “Kaposi sarcoma (KS) is a cancer that develops from the cells that line lymph or blood vessels,” which prior to the 1980s commonly occurred in older people. However, in the beginning of the 1980s, there were five registered cases of young gay men who were hospitalized in California and New York with what was believed to be a rare form of cancer and/or pneumonia called Pneumocystis Pneumonia Carinii (History of HIV & AIDS in the U.S.A). According to WebMD, “Pneumocystis Pneumonic (PCP) is a serious infection that causes inflammation and fluid buildup in the lungs.” The number of cases had increased rapidly in the beginning of the 1980s, to roughly six a week. In addition, it was during this period of time in which the disease became associated as a gay disease (e.g., gay-related immune deficiency, gay cancer, community acquired immune dysfunction, and gay compromise syndrome) (History of HIV & AIDS in the U.S.A).
The Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV), is a virus that weakens the immune sys...


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...ditures.”
Nonetheless, syringe exchange programs have proven to be an effective strategy in preventing blood-borne infectious diseases as well as cost effective (Syringe Exchange Programs). As a result, the majority of the states have enacted syringe access laws providing sterile syringes, supplies as well as treatment to drug users who inject. Consequently, the rate of HIV/AIDS and hepatitis B and C infections have decreased drastically in the past decade. Clearly, syringe exchange programs are a crucial intervention, which aid in reducing the rates of blood-borne related diseases. Evidently, drug abuse is a public health issue and should be treated as such, establishing programs that provide sterile supplies as well as education, will not only help reduce the number of infections among drug users, but could help reduce the number of people who do drugs as well.

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