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14.12.2007 Health

AIDS cases reduce in Ashanti Region

AIDS cases reduce in Ashanti Region
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A total of 1,181 AIDS cases involving 650 females and 531 males were recorded from January to September, Dr Kofi Asare, Ashanti Regional Director of Ghana Health Service, has said.

This, he said, was against 1,744 cases comprising 1,016 females and 650 males recorded in 2006.

Dr. Asare was presenting an overview of HIV/AIDS situation in the region at the launch of the Ashanti Regional World AIDS Day at Asokore-Mampong near Kumasi on Tuesday.

He said 35 Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMCT) and Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) centres have been established in the region and that plans were advanced to scale up the number next year to give more room for people to go for testing for their HIV/AIDS status.

He said 40,000 women registered for VCT this year and that 211 out of the 6,231 pregnant women who went in for the test proved positive.

The Regional Director said nine anti-retroviral therapy treatment centres have been established throughout the region in addition to that of Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH).

He appealed to the youth who have not gone for the VCT to do so to ascertain their HIV/AIDS status.

Madam Patricia Appiagyei, the Kumasi Metropolitan Chief Executive, said it was sad that since the year 2006 to date the prevalence rate of the HIV/AIDS in the metropolis had consistently exceeded the national rate.

Madam Appiagyei said the reduction of the prevalent rate in the region could be attributed to the interventions and strategies being pursued by the assembly with the support of the Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC) and non-governmental organizations in the region.

She said the major activity for the year would be on decentralization of HIV/AIDS activities to the sub-Metropolitan Councils and that another major intervention would be to ensure that organizations and companies implement HIV/AIDS workplace policy.

Mr Osei Assibey Antwi, Deputy Ashanti Regional Minister, appealed to traditional rulers, faith organizations and youth groups as well as Metropolitan and District assemblies to continue to educate people on the virus and how it could be prevented.

Nana Boakye Ansah Debrah, Asokore-Mamponghene, said he was happy that the day was celebrated in his area because it goes to complement the efforts he and his people were doing to reduce the menace in the region.

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