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Kerala launches free anti-retroviral scheme

Our Bureau

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The State Government has kicked off a programme that ensures free anti-retroviral therapy to the HIV-infected in the State.

This is the first own-funded initiative from any State Government to provide free treatment in this manner, an official spokesman said here.

A sum of Rs 1.65 crore has been earmarked for buying the necessary drugs that will be dispensed through the five Medical College Hospitals in the State. Inaugurating the programme, the Health Minister, Mr K. K. Ramachandran Master, said that district hospitals would be gradually brought under the dispensing network. The anti-retroviral drugs will help the HIV-infected to lead near-normal lives for a comparatively much longer time.

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