Sri Lankan corporates form alliance to combat HIV/AIDS

Aug 23, 2007 (LBO) – Sri Lankan companies have formed a business coalition on HIV/AIDS saying increasing awareness and gearing up workplaces to handle the pandemic helps reduce its financial and economic costs. “HIV affects the most productive segment of the society. We need to promote a coordinated, standardised HIV workplace program approach,” Jaspal Bindra, director and regional CEO of Standard Chartered Bank said at the launch.

Due to the low awareness and social stigma, the infected stay away from treatment.

Employers have to face loss of workers, absenteeism, rising cost of health care benefits and death benefits if workers are infected which in turn affects the company’s bottom line.

“Treating the infected and appointing them back to work is financially feasible against new recruitment and training,” said Ann Grant, vice chairman, Standard Chartered Capital Markets.

In developing countries with low levels of HIV/AIDS, most deaths occur among the very young and very old, humanitarian organisation, reports say.

Persons who were infected as children or young adults are struck by AIDS when they are in their primary working age of 25 to 45.

A United Nations study on AIDS show