Home Health USAID’s project provides care, treatment to 36,429 PLHIV

USAID’s project provides care, treatment to 36,429 PLHIV

Health Conference Hiv
USAID strengthening continuum project

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Strengthening the Care Continuum Project, from 2019 to date, has provided 36, 429 People Living with HIV access to care and treatment in the Western, Western-North and Ahafo Regions in Ghana. 

The move was in line with USAID Strengthening the Care Continuum Project to assist implementation partners such as the Ghana Health Services (GHS), Ghana AIDS Commission and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to meet the 90-90-90 target by 2030.
This became known during “The Lessons Learned Event,” dubbed, “Working Together to Achieve HIV/AIDS Epidemic Control in three Regions”, in Takoradi.

Madam Kimberly Kosen, USAID Ghana Mission Director in a keynote address, said the partnership through United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the Ghana AIDS Commission, the National AIDS Control Programne(NACP) and JSI has brought HIV care treatment and testing services to communities in Ahafo,Western and Western-North Regions.

She said since 2006 the USAID Strengthening the Care Continuum Project had worked with the government of Ghana to provide HIV treatment to people in the three Regions.
Madam Kosen lauded the government of Ghana for its continued support to end HIV /AIDS as a public health threat in Ghana by 2030.

She noted that “over the past four years, PEPFAR had supported the government of Ghana to test more than 460,000 individuals, diagnosed more than 18,000 HIV-positive people and initiated 17,000 anti-retroviral therapy courses.

She added that “through this test and treat method, in addition to other prevention activities, Ghana prevented thousands more HIV infections”.

She said this year marked an important milestone in the fight against HIV as in May 2023, PEPFAR celebrated its 20th anniversary.

Madam Kosen said the USA partnership in Ghana has made real impart with its first three years of implementation, the USAID Care Continuum Project reached over 30,700 people with HIV services with expansion of support to 29 Districts and to more than 100 health facilities nearly tripling the number of patients receiving care.

Director-General of the Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC) Dr. Kyeremeh Atuahene recalled that Ghana’s progress towards the 90-90-90 targets was slow when it was launched in 2019, however, considerable progress towards national targets has been achieved with collaboration among Regional Health Directorate, health facilities,NGO implementing partners, GAC and PERFAR partners.

Dr. Atuahene lauded JSI for the pioneering role to champion the implementation of innovative strategies in capacity building and mentorship among health care providers, patient-centered care, back to care campaign and services such as HIV-self-testing and pre-exposure prophylaxis to prevent HIV transmission.

The Director-General lamented that “Ghana is way behind the 2020 targets of 90-90-90 adding, that between 2019 and 2022, Ghana was only able to progress by less than 10 percentage point.

Dr. Atuahene projected that “at the current rate of progress, Ghana is unlikely to achieve the 90-90-90 targets by 2030 by which time we should rather adhere to the global target of 98-98-98% to end AIDS.

“Many African countries have adhered to the 2025 targets of 95-95-95 when Ghana is still struggling to achieve even the 90-90-90 targets.

“Such countries unlike Ghana have enjoyed huge resources from the Global fund and PEPFAR countries in West Africa are lagging behind on these targets due to inadequate investments in the proven strategies”.

Dr. Atuahene said the GAC was embarking on resource mobilization but may not find all the funds and therefore exhorted all implementing partners to adopt efficiency measures while, the government and health partners collaborate to maximize the benefits of integration and synergies in health Programmes.

Dr. Henry AjewiNarh Nagai, Chief of Party, USAID Care Continuum Project, attributed the success story of the project to collaboration with paramount chiefs, communities and health service providers in the Ghana Health Services which improved HIV prevention.

He said with the help of USAID, access to COVID-19 vaccines have seen tremendous increase among PLWH in the three beneficiary Regions.

He stressed the need for continued collaboration and respect to sustain the project.

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