The effect of AIDS epidemic in developing world has an immense effect because of several factors of which the socio economic condition of those individuals affected in some countries of Africa and Asia continues to pay the price most heavily. At the end of 2010, an estimated 34 million people were living with HIV globally, including 3.4 million children less than 15 years. In Asia about 4.8 million people were living with HIV in 2010 1. Reductions in the number of people acquiring HIV infection, especially people 15–24 years old in the countries in sub-Saharan Africa that have a high burden of HIV, have been offset by increases in new infections in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, where the primary mode of transmission among people who inject drugs and their sexual networks 1, 2. Access to HIV testing and counselling is increasing: coverage of HIV testing and counselling among pregnant women rose from 8% in 2005 to 35% in 2010. Nevertheless, the majority of people living with HIV in low-and middle-income countries still do not know their serostatus2. Women, especially young women, remain disproportionately affected in sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the need to address gender inequity and harmful gender norms as a central component of the global response to HIV 3 Key populations at higher risk of HIV infection and transmission, including people who inject drugs, men who have sex with men, transgender people, sex workers, prisoners and migrants continue to be underserved by current HIV services and often have the highest HIV prevalence in areas with both generalized and concentrated epidemics 4.
India is one of the largest and most populated countries in the world, with over one billion inhabitants. Of this number, it's estimated that around 2.4 million people are currently living with HIV. HIV emerged later in India than it did in many other countries. Several factors like poverty, illiteracy, poor hygiene conditions are the main factors which have contributed to the spread of this disease 5.People living with HIV in India come from incredibly diverse cultures and backgrounds. The vast majority of infections occur through heterosexual sex (80%), and is concentrated among high risk groups including sex workers, men who have sex with men, and injecting drug users as well as truck drivers and migrant workers 6. Due to vast size of this country, it is often difficult to exactly analyse the pattern and the socio-demographic characteristics which influence the spread of this disease. Understanding the socio-demographic characteristic patterns of the people infected with HIV is important as the distribution of the epidemic shows heterogeneous results. Certain pockets like the north eastern states of India shows a higher epidemic rate than the rest of the country, certain groups like the High Risk Group (HRG) require greater attention.
Studies have shown that individuals infected with HIV are susceptible to a wide array of opportunistic infections, in addition to infections that are pathogenic to hosts without HIV infection 7. The latter infections tend to be more common and more severe in persons with HIV infection. Individuals infected with HIV have lowered immunity levels hence they are prone to be susceptible to a wide variety of opportunistic infections (OIs). Most of the HIV infected individuals have a mortality rate due to secondary infections. As the CD4 lymphocyte levels falls below 200 cells/mm3the risk for opportunistic infection increases 8. Certain OIs are associated with reversible increases in circulating viral load, and these increases could lead to accelerated HIV progression or increased transmission of HIV. Despite the availability of ART, OIs continue to cause considerable morbidity and mortality for three primary reasons: 1) many patients are unaware of their HIV infection and seek medical care when an OI becomes the initial indicator of their disease; 2) certain patients are aware of their HIV infection, but do not take ART because of psychosocial or economic factors; and 3) certain patients are prescribed ART, but fail to attain adequate virologic and immunologic response because of factors related to adherence, pharmacokinetics, or unexplained biologic factors 9 Thus, although hospitalizations and deaths have decreased since the implementation of ART, OIs remain a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in HIV with huge economic burden.
This study aims to explore the pattern of socio-economic changes as well as the different demographic variables that the HIV population go through. The importance of the socio-economic status is that it would aid the policy makers and the clinicians in shaping the future programs in tackling this disease which is on the rise in India. Among the variables analyzed are the associations of the HIV status and the various variables including the education status, income (if above or below the poverty line), residence, age, marriage, no. of children empowerment infected persons. Though the studies have been done in the pan Indian basis, not much demographic data is available on the eastern and the north eastern states which according to NACO are highly endemic regions for the HIV disease 10