Sampa (B/A), Dec. 3, GNA – HIV andAIDS trend continued to increase in the Jaman South District of the Brong-Ahafo Region, Mr Samuel Opoku, District Director of Health Services, said on Monday.
Statistics in the district showed that from January to June, 84 people were infected with the virus out of 1,413 people screened, he said.
Mr Opoku was speaking at a durbar to mark the Jaman North District celebration of the 2013 World AIDS Day on the theme “accelerating to zero; accelerating the national response towards the MDGs” at Sampa.
It was jointly organized by Mission of Hope for Society (MIHOSO), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) and OLAM Ghana Limited, a cashew buying company.
Mr Opoku said 129 people tested HIV positive in 2012 out of the 1,882 people screened whilst 153 people tested positive in 2011 out of the 2,407 people screened.
In 2010, out of the 2,258 screened, 225 of them tested positive, he added and advised the youth in the area to abstain from sexual promiscuity.
Mr Opoku said lack of funds to carry out HIV and AIDS education, sexual immorality among the youth as well as stigmatization of people living with HIV/AIDS were major contributory factors to the spread of the virus.
He explained that because of public stigma, people felt shy and were always reluctant to go for the voluntary counseling testing.
Mr Gabriel Gbiel Benarkuu, Chief Executive Officer of MIHOSO, called on the World Health Organisation (WHO) to support Ghana to formulate and implement long term policies that would improve and scale up HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services.
He noted with concern that HIV/AIDS remained one of the most significant public health challenges in the country.
Mr Benarku said mining activities and influx of refugees from neigbouring Cote D’Ivoire were some of the leading causes of HIV/AIDS in the Brong-Ahafo Region.
Mr Benarkuu called for a national corporate social responsibility law that would help create more resource base to finance community-based projects especially HIV, breast and cervical cancers.