Mérida, Yucatán.- The Network of People Affected by HIV (RepaVIH) denounced a lack of antiretroviral drugs for people with HIV at Issste hospitals in Yucatán, which puts hundreds of beneficiaries with this disease at risk.
“There is currently a shortage of Tenofrovir and Emtricitabine. We have notified Issste authorities of cases of people who have been waiting for more than 20 days. They claim to have made the request since October, but to date the medication is not available in the pharmacy. It is important to remember that the success of HIV treatment depends on the supply of antiretroviral treatment,” said Eduardo Espadas Ortega, representative of the group.
It was reported that some 400 Issste beneficiaries in Yucatan and a little more than 100 in Campeche have not received their anti-HIV drugs for several months, which affects these people, who are only seeking to continue with their treatment.
The members of the organization affirmed that the patients could not afford to pay for the treatments on their own either, since it means an expense of between 7 and 53 thousand pesos per month, in terms of antiretroviral drugs, in addition to the fact that they are not receiving the necessary tests to know their condition, something that also puts them at risk of succumbing to HIV.
It was reported that the lack of medication could aggravate the HIV patient’s condition, depending on the person, so the ISSSTE was urged to expedite the process of delivering medicines and conducting studies of patients.
RepaVIH pointed out that Yucatan has the third highest number of HIV deaths in the country, with 5.8% of cases per 100,000 inhabitants, a situation that could be aggravated by the lack of medicines.
In his turn, Luis Adrián Quiroz, representative of the group “Salud Derechos y Justicia” (Health Rights and Justice), commented that the affected people are afraid to complain for being exposed or that there may be reprisals by Issste authorities, so he reiterated that the organizations have sent the complaints, although nothing has been done by the hospital directors.
“We know that Issste has released the purchase of the medication, but the directors are not interested in the health of the people, so they have not acquired them. We hope that this will not cause any major effects, since each patient is at risk depending on his or her organism. The truth is that these are life-supporting drugs because they have to be taken all the time to ensure that the virus does not replicate. When there are failures, some people start to have complications”, he warned.