02.08.2006 Health

More AIDS Patients To Have Access To Anti-Retroviral Drugs

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More district and regional health facilities will start administering anti-retroviral drugs to AIDS sufferers by the end of this year in order to meet the increasing needs of 16,000 more people living with the disease, health authorities have stated.

According to Mr Eric Pwadura, Public Relations and Communication Officer of the Ghana Aids Commission (GAC), only 5,000 out of 400,000 people currently living with HIV/AIDS in Ghana were on anti-retroviral drugs.

Speaking during the launch of the Tema district 2005-06 National Service Week celebration, he indicated that about 16,000 more affected people could be catered for by the end of the year when regional and district hospitals would be in a position to administer the drugs, which was currently being handled by only selected hospitals.

Mr Pwadura said the Northern Region had the lowest of 1.2 percent rate of infection, while the Eastern Region topped with 4.7 percent. Ashanti Region had three percent and Greater-Accra 2.1 percent.

He indicated that even though the infection rate of the disease in Ghana kept dropping since its first detection in the country in 1986, a lot must be done.

Mr Pwadura further stated that the ABC approach of curbing the spread had been re-defined into postponement of sexual activities, reduction of sexual partners, use of condoms correctly and consistently, as well as doing away with stigmatization.

Launching the week, Mr Theodore Koranteng, Tema District Coordinator of the National Service, said the celebration was organized to create awareness of the contributions of the service to the growth of the economy.

Activities lined up for the celebration included a forum on road safety and entrepreneurship, and blood donation to the Tema General Hospital.

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