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27.12.2004 Regional News

AIDS Commission asked to set up mobile counselling and testing units

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Gomoa Fetteh (C/R), Dec. 27, GNA - The Executive Director of Allies in Development Actions, a non-governmental organization, Mr Emmanuel Amokwandoh has urged the Ghana AIDS Commission to set up mobile voluntary counselling and testing (VCT) units to enable people who want to know their HIV status have easy access to the testing apparatus. Mr Amokwandoh said a report on a survey conducted by DANIDA on AIDS in Gomoa recently indicated that 83 per cent of 1,590 people interviewed were willing to do the VCT, but did not have access to the facility. Mr Amokwandoh who made the call at a workshop at Gomoa Fetteh in the Central Region, said since no cure had yet been found for the pandemic, early detection of people infected could help them take measures to enable them live a little longer.

The NGO is the only one that offered care and support services to people living with the disease in the Gomoa District, and according to the Executive Director, it was catering for some 165 People Living With AIDS (PLWAs) and 65 AIDS orphans.

The NGO provides counselling service, food, drugs and money while in addition the organization caters for school fees, uniforms and medical bills of the orphans apart from the food provided. Mr Amokwandoh admonished prayer camps to send their patients who showed symptoms of the HIV/AIDS to the hospital for their status to be established through testing.

He appealed for financial support for the organization to extend the service to cover more PLWAs in the district.

He expressed gratitude to the management of the Apam Catholic Hospital for their cooperation in locating PLWAS in the area. Miss Mabel Gerrar, Community Health Nurse in charge of Fetteh Clinic, expressed concern about increase in cases of teenage pregnancy in the town and appealed to parents to live up to their responsibilities.

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