A nine-member AIDS committee has been inaugurated by the Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA) to help curtail the spread of the Human Immune Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) in the Metropolis.
The Tema Metropolis is said to have seen a rise in HIV/AIDS cases in recent times.
The AIDS Committee which is chaired by Mr. Felix Mensah Nii Anang-La, Tema Metropolitan Chief Executive, is expected to roll out interventions to mobilise resources, both financial and technical towards the development of programmes to sensitize residents on the virus and disease.
They are also expected to provide testing services, care for the vulnerable groups, monitor implementing partners in the Metro, as well as HIV decentralised response, and reduce stigmatisation.
The Committee would also provide technical support for local stakeholders on HIV and AIDS issues.
Membership of the Committee comprises of the Metropolitan Director of Health, representatives of Person Living with HIV, Civil Society Organisation (Live Right Ghana), Christian Community, Federation of Muslims and the Amahdiyya Mission, Traditional Authority, and the Metropolitan Director of Education, as well as the Metropolitan HIV Focal Person.
Alhaji Shehu A. Kadiri, Tema Metropolitan Coordinating Director, reminded the Committee of the need to reduce to the barest minimum, the estimated Tema Metropolitan HIV adult prevalence of 2.09 per cent in 2019, which was slightly below the Greater Accra Region’s estimated adult prevalence of 2.47 per cent, and above the estimated National adult prevalence of 1.70 per cent.
Mr. Kyeremeh Atuahene, Director General, Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC), in an address read on his behalf by Ms Rita Afriyie, Technical Coordinator of the Technical Support Unit, said the initial Metropolitan, Municipal and District AIDS Committees of the Commission had been replaced with membership slightly modified under section nine of the Ghana AIDS Commission Act, 2016, Act 938.
“Among its innovations, Act 938 has made copious provisions to safeguard the rights of Persons Living with HIV, established HIV and AIDS funds to promote resources mobilization,” he stated.
Mr. Atuahene said new infections were on the increase, adding that “we must work hard to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.
An estimated 342,307 people were living with HIV/AIDS in Ghana, he said.