Wednesday, 27 May 2009 1:46 PM

No Laws to Deal With HIV and AIDS

As the country faces the real possibility of a rise in HIV-positive cases next year, Solomon Islands is still without specific laws to deal with HIV and AIDS prevention and management.

Last year, the Ministry of Health declared 12 confirmed HIV positive cases, eight females and four males, five have since died.

The first confirmed HIV positive case recorded for Solomon Islands was in 1994.

A recent health report from the World Health Organisation has predicted at least 350 HIV positive cases for Solomon Islands by 2010.

National Coordinator of the HIV and STI Unit of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services, Isaac Muliloa admit there is still a great gap in the Unit's work without specific HIV and AIDS related laws in the Constitution.

Mr Muliloa says an area of discrimination with those living with HIV is in the workplace "and this needs to be addressed through legislation."

On the other end of the scale, there are also no national laws incriminating intentional transmission of HIV.

Mr Muliloa says the HIV and STI Unit and the Solomon Islands National AIDS Council have only been recently set up and they are still learning the system of HIV and AIDS policy design.