The Uganda Network on Law, Ethics and HIV/AIDS (UGANET) has urged all individuals to “Know their status”.
In a call made to commemorate the World Aids Day which was celebrated on December 1, UGANET said that it believes if everyone got to know their status as soon as possible, the global dream of ending AIDS by 2030 is realistic.
“For this to happen, an enabling legal, human rights and social environment must exist. An environment that is free from stigma and discrimination, and environment that encourages people living with HIV to live with dignity, take up services in the place of hiding and take responsible steps to prevent any further infections,” the organisation said in a statement.
The organisation said that sadly, some of the provisions of the HIV Prevention and Control Act, which was passed a couple of years ago, has the element that compromises ￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼confidentiality.
It noted that under the law, health practitioners are encouraged to disclose test results of another to third parties where they think that they pose a risk to other people. This power, the statement noted, is broad, subjective and vague.
On July 14 2016, UGANET, ICWEA and Ben Twinomugisha, a professor of Law represented more than 60 HIV and Human rights civil society organisations to file Constitutional Court Challenge No. 24 of 2016.
The petition challenges the criminalisation of HIV and forced disclosure.
An HIV Impact Assessment (UPHIA) report for Uganda carried out in 2016 indicates that the total number of adults and children of all ages living with HIV is approximately 1.3 million.
The 2016 UPHIA indicated a fall in HIV national prevalence at 6% compared to 7.3% according to the 2011 Uganda AIDS Indicator Survey.