7 December 2012

Ghana: Shama District Records 78 New AIDS Cases

The Shama District Health Directorate has from January to November 2012 recorded 78 AIDS cases out of which 15 are pregnant women.

Mr Francis Coffie, HIV/AIDS Focal Person at the health directorate made this known at a public lecture on HIV/AIDS at Aboadze, saying the age range of the infected is between 19 and 35 years and five have already delivered.

He expressed regret that only 45 out of the infected are receiving treatment at the health institutions with the fate of the rest quite unknown as they keep moving to different health facilities in order to hide their identities.

Mr Coffie said this is so as the health directorate continues to receive reports from other health institutions in the Shama District on People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) visiting their facility for treatment instead those in their own locality.

The lecture which was held in commemoration of the Worlds AIDS Day, was on the theme, "Getting to zero, zero new infection, zero AIDS related deaths, and zero stigma and discrimination".

Mr Coffie appealed to the victims to do away with shyness and report at the directorate for treatment as drugs were available to treat them and prolong their lifespan.

He said this is true as known people in the world who contracted the diseases from its onset are still alive because of the known medication, the "Anti Retroviral Drugs".

He advised the youth to lead moral responsible lives to avoid contracting the disease as 95 percent is contracted through unprotected sex with multiple partners while the five percent is contracted through contaminated razors and used tooth brushes amongst others.

Mr Enoch Kojo Appiah, Shama District Chief Executive (DCE), appealed to the general public to go for voluntary HIV/AIDS tests in order to know their status to guide them on their lives.

Mr Appiah said it was unacceptable to stigmatize those with the disease and appealed to PLWHA to come out voluntary to declare their status.

The DCE appealed to parents and guardians to monitor their children to ensure that they lead moral lives and avoid indulging in social vices.

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