In a concerning revelation, Mr Ahmed Ibrahim Bimbilla, the Regional Technical Coordinator of the Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC), has highlighted the alarming surge in HIV infections within the Bono Region. With a prevalence rate of 2.27%, surpassing the national average of 1.7%, urgent collective efforts are required to tackle this growing epidemic.
The region, however, recorded a staggering 844 new HIV infections in 2022 alone, emphasizing the pressing need
For several years, the Bono Region has persistently topped the charts for HIV and AIDS cases nationwide. However, in a surprising turn of events, the Eastern region took the lead in 2022. Nevertheless, Mr Bimbilla emphasizes that reducing the Bono Region’s prevalence rate is of paramount importance. The collective support and active participation of all individuals are crucial in combating this public health crisis.
To curb the spread of new HIV infections, Mr Bimbilla highlights key preventive measures that can make a significant difference. These include promoting the use of condoms and lubricants, advocating for abstinence from sex, encouraging voluntary testing and counselling, and raising awareness about other preventive measures. By implementing these strategies, it is possible to bring the rising number of cases under control.
Mr Raphael Godlove Ahenu, the Bono Regional Chairman of GHANET, sheds light on a vulnerable group at high risk of HIV and AIDS: sexually active young people. Due to their limited knowledge about the disease, they face heightened exposure to infection.
GHANET has taken proactive steps to reach out and educate young individuals in the region, emphasizing the importance of protecting themselves and avoiding pre-marital sexual practices.
Mr Ahenu urges young girls to exercise caution and resist temptations that may lead them into risky sexual encounters.
He advises against succumbing to gifts or other enticements that could potentially expose them to the virus and other sexually transmitted infections. Stressing that sex is a sacred commitment within marriage, he encourages young people to focus on their education and steer clear of negative peer influences.
In a commendable effort to promote safe practices and raise awareness about sexual health, they generously distributed over 1,000 condoms free of charge to individuals. Additionally, they shared over 300 test kits, ensuring citizens have access to essential resources for their well-being.
The team also took the initiative to educate the community about the proper usage of these kits, empowering them to make informed decisions about their sexual health. This comprehensive approach aims to foster a culture of responsibility and care within Sunyani, ultimately creating a safer and healthier environment for all.