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Kansas Department of Health Will Not Quarantine HIV or AIDS Patients

The Red HIV/AIDS Awareness Ribbon

The Red HIV/AIDS Awareness Ribbon

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment put an end to the uproar over a bill that would have, ostensibly, allowed for the quarantining people with HIV or AIDS. The department noted that, because neither HIV nor AIDS are critically infectious as in that they cannot be contracted casually.

The Kansas Assembly voted to repeal a law that specifically prevented the quarantining of people with HIV or AIDS. The bill that they passed also requires that any patient whose blood is

The bill also requires that the KDHE draft rules by the end of the year to ensure that first responders learn quickly whether or not they have been exposed to infected blood while treating patients or handling materials. Charlie Hunt, a state epidemiologist, noted that they would be revising the diseases that can lead to quarantines, but stated that neither HIV nor AIDS would make the list. Still, some critics are not happy with that scared that HIV or AIDS patients will still face potential discrimination.

Still, the Equality Coalition is happy with these promises. Tom Witt, their executive director, stated “We’re good. This alleviates our concerns.”

Lead House negotiator David Crum stated that “The whole thing all along has been one big misunderstanding.” Lead Senate negotiator Mary Pilcher-Cook, noted that the 1988 law was unnecessary now and that “It was understandable back in the 1980s, when many people were not educated on how HIV was transmitted, but today that’s not the case.”

HIV and AIDS is spread through infected bodily fluids.  This means that first responders can be among the most vulnerable and at risk people to get HIV or AIDS due to the possibility of infection from bloody needles, blood, vomit, saliva and so forth.  Unlike diseases like the flu, HIV and AIDS are not transmitted via the air.



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