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World AIDS Day 2021: Stakeholders in FCT laud achievements

Dec, 2021 | By Prudence Okonna | ||

As the world commemorated the World AIDS Day 2021, annually marked on December 1, stakeholders within FCT have lauded improved testing and treatment of HIV/AIDS patients within the nation's capital. The event brought together partners and major stakeholders at Kuje Area Council secretariat to explore the theme 'End Inequalities, End AIDs through sustainable financing' and chart ways and activities to improve access, testing and treatment.

The Coordinator, FCT AIDS and STIs Control Program (FASCP), Dr. Benson Udu, in his remark appreciated partners for their continued support and encouraged community members to know their status.

Speaking on the achievements attained, Regional Manager Institute of Human Virology Nigeria (IHVN), Fadimatu Bishara, said as of 2021, 81,000 HIV/AIDS patients were currently on treatment, crediting this milestone to the efforts and commitment of stakeholders.

According to a representative of the AIDs Health Care foundation, Rosekate Abiaziem, FCT has recorded great achievements in the fight against HIV/AIDS, maintaining that the feat pays tribute to the commitment and dedication of the state and Kuje Area Council towards reducing the size and impact of the epidemic. "Millions of people still die from HIV/AIDS largely because they do not know their HIV status. Thus, we want to keep the promise by ending inequalities and AIDS through sustainable financing in Nigeria which is this year's theme,"Abiaziem said.

Wife of Kuje Area Council Chairman, Salamatu Abdulahi Sabo, in her remark, encouraged pregnant women to get tested and also take the Covid-19 vaccine. One of the stakeholders, Executive Director, Centre for School Health Education and Environmental Hygiene (CSHEEH), Dr. Folashade Momoh, harped on the inequalities in HIV service delivery as those who need to access such services are being hindered due to poor access resulting from lack of awareness, lack of commodities, poor infrastructure, lack of trained manpower, stigma and discrimination.

Dr. Momoh called for more collaborative efforts by stakeholders to achieve the target 95-95-95 by 2030. The ambitious 95-95-95 strategy was announced by UNAIDS in 2014, aiming to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 by achieving 95% diagnosed people living with HIV (PLHIV), 95% on antiretroviral therapy (ART) among diagnosed, and 95% virally suppressed (VS) among those treated.

As part of activities to mark the day, free test kits were provided, instant testing service was also available and a Covid-19 vaccination point was put in place.


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