25,000 estimated to be HIV/AIDs carriers


THE HIV/AIDS epidemic continues to be a challenge for the country with more than 25,000 people affected and receiving treatment, an official says.
Programme manager of sexual transmitted disease and HIV at the Department of Health Dr Nick Dala said in Madang last week that HIV/AIDs cases in the province were increasing from a 0.7 per cent infection rate to 1 per
cent which meant the epidemic was increasing.
“Madang has about 500 people affected and on treatment, excluding those not on treatment.”
Dala was in Madang to participate and witness the official handover ceremony of the United Sates government-funded FH3600 HIV project which coordinated HIV response activities to the Madang provincial government.
Caring for patients, counselling and addressing issues affecting HIV/AIDs in the province will now be carried solely out by the provincial government.
Since the programme was funded by the US government from 2008 until this year, US ambassador Catharine Ebert Grey officially handed over the programme to Madang provincial administrator Daniel Aloi representing the provincial administration and government.
“The success of the USAid-funded HIV programme in Madang is rooted in the strong partnership between PEPFAR/USAID-funded FHI360 and local organisations in Madang,” Ebert
Grey said during the ceremony on Thursday.
“Today we are celebrating the success of this partnership and acknowledging the ability of the provincial government in Madang to take charge of this important project and provide these important services to its citizen.”