Ghana is to establish a national HIV/AIDS fund to boost the fight to control and eradicate the disease, a health official said Thursday.
Minister of Health Kwaku Agyeman-Manu announced the decision in his keynote address during the World AIDS Day commemoration in the Ghanaian capital of Accra.
“President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will launch the fund in the coming days as part of Ghana’s commitment toward achieving the global 95-95-95 target by 2030,” Agyeman-Manu said.
The minister added that the government’s decision to set up the fund was an acceptance of the challenge to increase resource allocation toward the fight to reduce and finally eradicate new infections.
The minister told Xinhua that Ghana had a lot to do in the fight against HIV/AIDS, “and that needs a dedicated fund.”
“We need a lot of advocacy. We need a lot of logistics, including drugs and non-drugs, for prevention and treatment. We need to give post-infection treatment, testing, and do viral-load tracing to see people’s response to treatment,” added Agyeman-Manu.
Apart from treatments, the minister said the research was ongoing, including local herbal preparations to seek a permanent cure for HIV/AIDS. “This type of research does not yield results early, but we will persevere,” he said.
Country Representative for the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) Hector Sucilla Perez also said Ghana needed urgent steps to achieve the global and national targets for eradicating new infections.
“There must be equality in testing, and in treatment and other social protection programs for people living with HIV/AIDS,” the UNAIDS official urged.
He commended Ghana for the decision on the National AIDS Fund because that could help the country achieve its national 95-95-95 targets on eradicating the pandemic.
The UNAIDS launched the 95-95-95 program in 2014 to diagnose 95 percent of all HIV-positive individuals, provide antiretroviral therapy for 95 percent of those diagnosed and achieve viral suppression for 95 percent of those treated by 2030. Enditem