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Campaign Akatsi-North District kick-starts HIV/AIDS services

The District can now provide HIV/AIDS counseling, testing and care to the infected persons in the area

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The Akatsi North District has given 1,000 HIV/AIDS test kits to five health facilities to begin HIV-AIDS Testing and Counseling in the area.

The District can now provide HIV/AIDS counseling, testing and care to the infected persons in the area and proceed to build its first database on the disease, in terms of the number of people infected and related deaths as well as the measures fighting it.

Ms. Babara Yeboah, the District HIV/AIDS focal person made this known to the GNA on the sidelines of a ceremony at Ave-Dakpa last Tuesday to mark World HIV-AIDS.

The theme, “Fast Track: meeting the health needs of children towards an HIV-free generation”, was meant to raise awareness on the disease, mourn those it has killed and prompt a renewed commitment at its eradication.

Students marched through the main street to herald the Day with placards reading: “HIV-AIDS is real and incurable”, “protect yourself from HIV-AIDS”, “use condom”, “Know your HIV-AIDS status” and “if it is not on, it is not in.”

Mr. James Gunu, the District Chief Executive (DCE) of the area, said it was sad that the continuous worldwide awareness and the preventive measures on the disease had not translated into behaviour changes among the sexually active segments of societies.

He said the staggering figures on HIV/AIDS infections and deaths and its diverse effects on society and individuals could not be wished away by anyone.

Mr. Gunu said the active work force and human resources of communities, families and countries risked being wiped out by the disease.

“I implore you students and the youth in general to inscribe these cautions of the disease on your hearts to avoid cutting your life and your future short,” he said.

The DCE said the Assembly would play its part in the global focus of achieving a zero HIV/AIDS status in the country and the world. Doctor Anthony Ashinyo, District Director, Ghana Health Service (GHS), said stigma and discrimination, cultural and religious barriers, insufficient health providers, limited facilities in the health care system, among others were challenges in the HIV and AIDS fight.

Dr. Ashinyo decried the numerous challenges HIV-positive mothers faced in accessing the high quality health interventions and services they were supposed to have.

He said the disease was the leading cause of death among women of reproductive age and a key contributor to death of infants and children worldwide.

He said in Ghana, 224,488 people were living with HIV/AIDS of which 131,737 were females. He called for a renewed commitment through sustained awareness creation to ensure all women became aware of available facilities to prevent mother-to-child infections, as well as the general scope of the disease.

Source: GNA

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