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Nov 6, 2013

Adult HIV-prevalence/New HIV infections Reduce In Ghana—HSS Report


The 2012 HIV Sentinel Surveillance (HSS) of Ghana report has shown a reduction in national adult HIV-prevalence as well as a reduction in new HIV infections.

 

According to the report, Ghana has experienced a reduction in national adult HIV-prevalence from a high of 3.6% in 2003 to 1.37% in 2012 while prevalence among sex workers has been reduced from 35% in 2006, through 25% in 2009 and to 11.1% in 2012, with that among the youth aged 15-24 years also declining appreciably from 1.7% to 1.3% over the years.

Currently, almost 236,000 people, including some 28,000 children (0-4 years) are living with HIV in Ghana while it is estimated that 121,000 people living with HIV (PLHIV) currently need antiretroviral, with over 76,000 having already been initiated on treatment and at least 700 more before close of the year.

Dr Angela El-Adas, Director-General of the Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC), made these known at the launch of the World AIDS Day in Accra, yesterday.

Dr El-Adas said the launch marked the beginning of a month-long period of activities that would culminate in a national durbar at Wa, Upper West regional capital, on December 2, 2013, to commemorate the 2013 World AIDS Day.

The global theme for this year’s event is ‘Getting to Zero: Zero new HIV infections, Zero discrimination, Zero AIDS-related deaths’’ while in full recognition of its priorities as a country, Ghana has chosen the sub-theme ‘Getting to Zero:

Accelerating the national response towards the MDGs.’

Launched together with World AIDS Day was the First Lady, Mrs Lordina Mahama’s Advocacy Campaign as Premier Ambassador in Ghana, for the Global Plan towards the Elimination of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV among children by 2015 and keeping their Mother’s Alive.

Dr El-Adas said the United Nations had designated the 1st of December each year to remind the public about the devastating impact of the HIV and AIDS, and the need to continue to respond in earnest to them.

In a keynote address, the First Lady, Mrs Lordina Mahama, said World AIDS Day was a day set aside by the United Nations to bring attention to the HIV epidemic, adding that the period would provide the global community the opportunity to show solidarity and support for people living with HIV and remember those who had died from AIDS.

Mrs Mahama said World AIDS Day was yet another opportunity to re-affirm the commitment and commit more resources to the global vision of ‘Zero new HIV infections, Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS-related death’’.

She said Ghana had chosen to launch World AIDS Day in November each year so as to provide the people of Ghana the opportunity to be exposed to a month-long series of events to create further awareness, provide information and promote the availability and uptake of HIV Services.

She disclosed that Ghana had been mentioned as one the few countries in the world that had achieved a high coverage of services to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV and a 76% reduction in new HIV infections among children.

Source: ISD (Solomon K.Tetteh   & Dela Charlotte Doe)