New VCCT centre for NIP

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday, May 11, 2011

THE opening of a voluntary confidential counselling and testing centre in New Ireland will give courage to people living with HIV/AIDS.
The centre, a first of its kind, was commissioned and opened recently in Kavieng town.
It is an initiative of HIV/AIDS Catholic diocese of Kavieng co-ordinator, Elizabeth Melik and funded by the National AIDS council of Papua New Guinea.
Melik said although AIDS had been around for quite some time, the biggest problem in the province was people giving up hope after discovering they were infected.
She said people living with HIV/AIDS were constantly being humiliated, rejected or simply felt ashamed.
Melik said that had led to the infection not being detected at an early stage.
She said the centre was a stand-alone project in the Kavieng district that aimed to provide enough information for the spiritual and physical care of people living with HIV.
She is appealing to people to visit the clinic and not be driven away by a sense of hopelessness and fear of being humiliated.
She said the centre would provide pre- and post-testing, preventive counselling and maintain confidentiality.