Kpone, Dec 4, GNA --- The Ghana Aids Commission (GAC) has advised persons living with HIV/AIDS to stick to their medications instead of seeking cure from unverifiable sources.
Dr Angela El-Adas, Director General of the Ghana Aids Commission, gave the advice in a statement read on her behalf by Miss Rita Afriyie, Technical Coordinator for Greater Accra, Technical Support Unit, during the Greater Accra Region’s commemoration of the World Aids Day at Kpone.
The theme for the celebration was: “90-90-90 providing comprehensive integrated services for all towards an HIV-free generation”.
Dr El-Adas stated that affected persons should not allow themselves to be swayed by stories and claims of a cure for HIV.
She stressed that the responsibility and mandate of persons living with HIV was to stay on the drugs prescribed by their care givers.
She reminded them that there were many series of tests that substances must be subjected to before a claim of cure can be made.
“The Ghana Aids Commission, along with the MOH and the FDA will be most proud to support the announcement of such findings. Until then, every researcher must be astute and stay within the ethics of research rather than sensationalism”, she added.
Touching on Ghana’s theme for the celebration, she explained that the 90-90-90 meant that by 2020, at least 90 per cent of all infected with HIV would have tested to know their status.
Also 90 per cent of those tested HIV positive and know their status would be put on anti retroviral treatment and 90 per cent of persons on treatment would achieve viral suppression by the year 2020.
She noted that this year marked the first year when Ghana and the global community signed onto the 90-90-90 targets to be achieved towards ending AIDS in 2030.
Dr El-Adas announced that Ghana was entering 2017 with a new Act for the GAC which has make provision for sanctions against people who stigmatize and discriminate against persons who live with HIV.
Mrs Patience Ami Mamattah, Kpone-Katamanso District Director of Health, giving the situational report of the disease for the area, said the District provides HIV\AIDS testing services at 16 health facilities in the area.
Mrs Mamattah indicated that this year, 2,556 pregnant women were tested out of which 27 tested positive while a total of 1,437 other residents were also tested out of which 148 turned out to be positive.
She however mentioned that the district does not have the needed infrastructure and equipment required to provide needed care for HIV patients.
She said due to the lack of diagnostic facilities such as chemistry analyzer and CD4 count machine in the District, most positive clients were unable to start treatment
Mr Joseph Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo, Greater Accra Regional Minister, in a speech read on his behalf, noted that through targeted prevention strategies, over the past five years, the region’s HIV prevalence has been sustained below two per cent.
Mr Afotey Agbo added that the annual AIDS related deaths have also been reduced by 43 per cent while 50 per cent reduction of HIV transmission from mother-to-child had been achieved with 81 per cent of women now receiving prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV services.
He announced that Ghana on October 1, this year begun the implementation of the “Treat All” policy in four high disease burden regions comprising of the Greater Accra Region, Eastern, Western and Ashanti Regions.
“Under the treat all regime, everyone who tests positive to HIV will be put on treatment”, he stated adding that it was a step-up from the previous policy where one’s CD4 count had to be 500 or lower before having access to treatment.