Migrating truck drivers as carrier to infectious diseases (HIV/AIDS)

Mamata Pathak


A large number of truck drivers were found having sex with the prostitutes in rural areas along the highways of India. Some were having sex with men also. HIV/AIDS awareness and condom use was poor among them. 3 out of 302 truck drivers were found to be infected with HIV. The truck drivers could play an important role in the spread of infections. Truck drivers are known to be one of the most potent carriers of the HIV virus due to numerous reasons. A survey in 2006 proved that 40% truck drivers were susceptible to have AIDS.                                                                                  After a person contrast a disease, it is his responsibility to know the cause and consequences of the disease. How many of the truckers know the basic difference between AIDS & HIV. Shockingly but it’s just 2% of them as per the study conducted by centre for media studies (CMS). When a HIV is positive, persons T-Lymphocyte count falls to 200 or less, he start developing AIDS. Thus, every person with AIDS is infected with HIV but all people with HIV infection do not have AIDS. 95% of the truckers with AIDS were in the age group of 18 to 45 years and 80% were married & around 75% were in the profession for more than 5 to 6 years. This show that more than illiteracy, ignorance and being away from home for long duration, were the main reason behind the spread of the disease among the truckers community. As a public health person we can aware people about following things:- Get tested and know your partner’s HIV status.  Use Condoms. Limit your number of sexual Partners. Get tested and treated foe STD. Don’t inject drugs.  

Relevant Publications in Journal of Infectious Diseases: Prevention and Control