Union Cabinet approves amendments to HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2014
It seeks to address HIV-related discrimination, strengthen the existing programme by bringing in legal accountability and establish formal mechanisms for inquiring into complaints and redressing grievances.
The Union Cabinet on 5 October 2016 approved the amendments to the HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2014.
The HIV and AIDS Bill, 2014 was drafted to safeguard the rights of people living with HIV and affected by HIV.
Provisions of the Bill
• It seeks to address HIV-related discrimination, strengthen the existing programme by bringing in legal accountability and establish formal mechanisms for inquiring into complaints and redressing grievances.
• It seeks to prevent and control the spread of HIV and AIDS, prohibits discrimination against persons with HIV and AIDS.
• It seeks to provide for informed consent and confidentiality with regard to their treatment, places obligations on establishments to safeguard rights of persons living with HIV.
• It aims to enhance access to health care services by ensuring informed consent and confidentiality for HIV-related testing, treatment and clinical research.
• It lists various grounds on which discrimination against HIV positive persons and those living with them is prohibited. These include the denial, termination, discontinuation or unfair treatment with regard to employment, educational establishments, health care services, provision of insurance, etc.
• It prohibits any individual from publishing information or advocating feelings of hatred against HIV positive persons and those living with them.
• It provides for Guardianship for minors.
• It requires that No person shall be compelled to disclose his HIV status except with his informed consent, and if required by a court order.
• It also asks Central and State governments to take measures to prevent the spread of HIV or AIDS, provide anti-retroviral therapy, facilitate their access to welfare schemes, lay guidelines for the care and treatment of children with HIV or AIDS.
• It makes provision for appointment of an ombudsman by State Governments to inquire into complaints related to the violation of the Act and penal actions in case of non-compliance.
There are no financial implications of the Bill.
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