At least 213 HIV-infected women have given birth to healthy babies in the government-run hospitals of Chhattisgarh in 2016-17, a state health official has said. “The health department is committed to secure the child from infection in the womb of a HIV-positive mother,” Chhattisgarh’s health services director R Prasanna told PTI. The multi-medicine treatment process has yielded better results, with 213 HIV-infected women having given birth to healthy babies, he said. In 2016-17, the HIV examination were conductedon as many as 3, 93,475 pregnant women and of them, 232 tested positive. Around 219 HIV positive pregnant women were provided treatment under the multi-medicine process at government hospitals, he said. After their deliveries, the babies of 213 women were detected uninfected and healthy, Prasanna said. However, the infection was found in the remaining six children who are being given medicines through the anti- retroviral therapy (ART) centres, he said. ART is the combination of several antiretroviral medicines used to slow the rate at which HIV makes copies of itself (multiplies) in the body. Prasanna said the state has 26,000 HIV positive people and of them, 10,289 were being provided medicines through five ART and 12 link ART centres (which work like sub-centres of ART), according to the set guidelines. Keeping in view the shortage of supply of HIV drugs from the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) at New Delhi in January this year, a new guideline was issued by the state, he said. “The medicines for adults were broken into a standard dose to feed the children. All the ART and link ART centres had followed the directive.\ “Neither the child patients, nor their parents had to face trouble (during shortage of medicines),” he said. As per the new guidelines of NACO, it is mandatory for all the HIV patients to take medicines of ART. For the purpose, the state recently received as many as 2.54 lakh medicines (of different compositions) from the Central government for its ART centres, the director said. He said the ART centres have also been allocated a budget to procure medicines on their own as per the requirement.