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17.11.2005 General News

Ghana Gets $20m to fight HIV/AIDS

Ghana Gets $20m to fight HIV/AIDS
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Accra, Nov. 17, GNA - The World Bank has approved 20 million dollars credit to assist the Government in the fight against HIV/AIDS. The World Bank Board of Executive Directors approved the credit in Washington from its soft-loan arm, the International Development Association (IDA).

The credit has a commitment fee of 0.35 per cent, a service charge of 0.75 per cent over a 40-year period of maturity, which includes a 10-year grace period.

A statement issued by the World Bank in Accra on Thursday said the multi-sectoral HIV/AIDS programme was being funded as a follow-up to the IDA-financed Ghana AIDS Response Fund project which was aimed at maintaining infection rates at the current levels among vulnerable groups and curb further spread among the general population.

"It is also aimed at mitigating the impact of the pandemic on the health and socio-economic systems, as well as on the infected and affected persons by promoting healthy lifestyles, especially in the area of sexual and reproductive health," the statement said.

The HIV/AIDS prevalence rate is about 3.1 per cent. The multi-sectoral HIV/AIDS project would focus on several areas including policy, advocacy and enabling environment, coordination and management of the decentralised response, mitigating the social, cultural, legal and economic impacts and prevention and behaviour change communication.

The others are treatment, care and support programmes and response mobilisation and funding arrangements.

The statement said the project would promote the sector wide concept and focus on harmonising the various on-going and future programmes while strengthening the Ghana AIDS Commission's capacity to efficiently monitor and coordinate resources and activities in support of the Second National Strategic Framework.

The project is a collaborative and harmonised effort with all the major development partners in HIV/AIDS in Ghana, especially the British Department for International Development, Danish International Development Agency, World Health Organisation, UN AIDS and US Agency for International Development.