A FOUR-DAY National Conference on HIV Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) has ended in Kumasi with a call on Ghanaians to lead exemplary lifestyles.
The conference, themed “Repositioning M&E for Results”, was aimed at equipping HIV Focal Persons across the country with additional skills. Participants were drawn from the 10 regions of the country.
Addressing the participants, Dr. Richard Amenyah, director in-charge of Technical Services at the Ghana AIDS Commission, who spoke on behalf of the Director-General, described HIV and AIDS as an emergency issue that required the involvement of all stakeholders in addressing it.
He said despite continuous education on the seriousness of the virus, Ghana still records 70 new HIV infections daily with 45 people dying from AIDS everyday. According to him, over 56 percent of the country's HIV population was women, stressing it was necessary that every Ghanaian knows his/her status.
He indicated that people infected with the virus were the energetic ones, who could contribute immensely to the nation's development.
He urged the Focal Persons to continue educating people about the dangers of the disease and redouble their efforts to achieve excellence at all times.
Hon. Osei Assibey-Antwi, the deputy Ashanti Regional Minister, bemoaned the lackadaisical attitude of Ghanaians in the control of the disease, adding that such behaviour had led to an increase in infections.
He said the devastating impact of HIV and AIDS must not be taken for granted.
He mentioned financial constraints, poor infrastructure and the lack of skilled health care workers as reasons that could impact negatively on the fight against the disease.
“This is the more reason why I am personally happy with the efforts the Ghana AIDS Commission is making with its collaborators and partners to continuously adopt effective strategies to ensure that the key players in the fight against HIV and AIDS upgrade their knowledge and skills to deal with the challenges confronting Africans today,” he stated.
From Stella Danso, Kumasi