8 September 2017

Sierra Leone: N.a.s Receives $50000 From Alere-Oafla Grant Program

The National Aids Secretariat has received a Grant of $50000 from the ALERE-Organization of African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA) Grant Program.

The ALERE-OAFLA Grant program, came about as a result of a Memorandum of Understanding signed between Alere and the Organization of African First Ladies (OAFLA), at the annual OAFLA event, in the margins of the 71st UN General Assembly in New York, in September 2016, to expand their partnership to entail campaigns, projects and schemes, with a goal of reaching an additional 500000 pregnant women, infants and adolescent's and other at risk populations in Africa through diagnostics interventions with screening and prevention services to build healthcare capacity, expand healthcare access, raise healthcare awareness and measure healthcare impact on mother to child prevention of HIV/Syphilis.

The First Ladies of Africa recognized the positive impact of the approximately 100000 HIV/Syphilis duo test kits that were donated by Alere to member States in the first phase of their partnership.

The First Lady of Sierra Leone, Mrs. Sia Nyama Koroma, distributed these kits among various maternity hospitals and health centres in Sierra Leone.

According to the Director General of the National Aids Secretariat of Sierra Leone Dr. Sesay, the HIV/Syphilis duo test kits proved to be an effective tool in preventing mother to child transmission of HIV/Syphilis.

He says that they have now factored the device into their annual budget for procurement under the national testing algorithm.

Dr. Sesay acknowledged the role played by Sierra Leone's First Lady for them to get the ALERE-OAFLA Grant, revealing that the Grant would be used to implement a prevention of mother to child transmission project in the Western Urban and Rural areas, Bo and Kenema Districts which include the distribution of baby packs, an Initiative of the First Lady that is being used to encourage pregnant and lactating mothers to do testing and use health facilities.

Since 2014, Alere Inc, a global leader in rapid diagnostics, partnered with the Organization of African First Ladies Against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA), an organization whose mission is to advocate for effective policies and strategies towards the elimination of HIV and AIDS, reduction of maternal and child mortality and the empowerment of women and children, through strategic partnerships in the spirit of solidarity.

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