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14.12.2005 Regional News

Suntreso hospital records 36 HIV/AIDS cases from January to June

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Apatrapa (Ash), Dec 14, GNA - Dr Kwabena Opoku-Adusei, the Medical Superintendent of the Suntreso Hospital in Kumasi, has said 36 HIV/AIDS positive cases made up of 27 women and nine men were recorded from January to June out of the 127 patients tested at the hospital. He said of 818 women who were counselled on the prevention of maternal to child transmission exercise during the same period, 293 voluntarily agreed to be tested of the HIV/AIDS and 15 of them were positive.

Dr Opoku-Adusei said this at a durbar of chiefs and people of Apatrapa near Kumasi on Tuesday to climax the weeklong activities that marked this year's World AIDS Day in the Kumasi metropolis. Organised by the Kumasi Metropolitan Health Directorate, the durbar was attended by health workers, pupils, teachers, traders, market women, religious organizations and other opinion leaders. Dr Opoku-Adusei cautioned the public against the increasing advertisements that some herbalists had found a cure for the HIV/AIDS, stressing that there was no cure for the disease.

Dr Joseph Oduro, the Kumasi Metropolitan Director of Health Services, said harmful traditional practices like female genital mutilation, male circumcision, rape, defilement and magical practices where sharp weapons were used to cut the body were some causes of HIV/AIDS in some rural communities. He stressed the need for health workers and community-based organisations to focus more attention on the negative and unhealthy cultural and traditional practices in some communities to reduce the spread of the disease. Dr Oduro asked opinion leaders especially teachers to help the adolescents to develop the knowledge; attitudes and skills that would help avoid negative behavioural practices.

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