Advisor urges proper response to HIV epidemic

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday October 29th, 2013

 EVERYONE does not have the same level of risk of contracting HIV, AusAID HIV decentralisation advisor Abraham Opito says.    

Opito told the Central provincial administration engagement consultation meeting yesterday that response to HIV/AIDS should be concentrated on the  most-at-risk population – sex workers, the transgender and men who have sex with men. 

He referred to a study in NCD in 2010 that showed a significantly higher rate of infection in sex workers, transgender and men having sex with men.  

“The national priorities (2013-15) focus on eight high-impact areas to achieve HIV millennium development goals,” Opito said. 

“The high-impact areas include comprehensive prevention for most-at-risk population in high prevalence locations, comprehensive condom programming-promotion and distribution – and addressing other sexually transmitted diseases.  

“Central needs to know the status of the epidemic and current response to adhere to these requirements,” he said.

“We need to know the level, trend and pattern of infection, geographical distribution (hotspot), most-at-risk groups, key factors driving the spread and who is doing what, where and with what resources. 

“For the province to respond, it has to allocate sustainable resources for priority interventions in line with the epidemic situation and allow for a greater intervention of HIV activities in health,” he said.