December 1st is observed worldwide as “World’s AIDS Day.” Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s World AIDS Day holds extra significance.

Around 32.7 million people have died from AIDS-related illnesses in the last 40 years; so far COVID-19 has claimed the lives of 1.4 million people. The highly infectious Coronavirus has swept across the globe, devastating health systems and laying waste to economies as governments introduced drastic measures to contain the spread. Not since the HIV/AIDS pandemic of the 1990s has countries faced such a common health threat.

These types of diseases take incredible expertise and dedication from all levels of society to understand, treat and prevent them.

On an initial level the awareness should be created that the two infections are different. HIV crashes immunity in patients, so does COVID; hence such patients need to be extra careful.

COVID is not merely a respiratory infection; rather it affects the body’s defense mechanism. It affects blood vessels which aggravate the disease a person is already suffering  from and also  creates the risk of other diseases, an HIV infected patient needs to follow precautions like social distancing, maintaining distance, avoid unncessary meetings, always wearing a mask, and consuming healthy food, and taking medications timely. Immediately report to the doctor if any minor change occurs.

The World AIDS Day theme reminds us that the HIV community has always been resilient, overcoming obstacles and challenges and constantly adapting new approaches for life-saving impact. And with COVID-19 the fight has become different, but not difficult.