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Ukraine project helps HIV-infected pregnant women

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Ukraine project helps HIV-infected pregnant women

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Health campaigners are marking World AIDS Day with a call to the Ukrainian government to increase funding for HIV-AIDS.

More than 21,000 new cases were reported last year taking the total number infected to around 230,000 people.

One treatment programme has achieved a dramatic reduction in the number of pregnant women passing the virus onto their babies.

The project has encouraged women who faced discrimination from the state healthcare system to come forward to receive antiretroviral therapy.

Ukrainian doctors say there’s a 50:50 chance of a mother passing on the virus to her baby without drugs, which falls dramatically if she does get treatment.

One infected woman who’s five months pregnant told euronews: “When I learned I was expecting a baby, I had mixed feelings. I cried, wondering if I could really bring a child into the world. Would it be infected? But I know many girls who are getting antiretroviral therapy and their kids are healthy, so I’m not too concerned.”