Stakeholders at a day’s workshop on HIV and AIDS have appealed to government to release counterparts funding for the procurements of materials and drugs for the care and treatment of HIV/AIDs patients in the Western Region.
They said many of the commodities needed to test, treat and provide overall care for persons living with the disease as well as the control of new infections continue to lag behind and this may hamper the achievement of the “90- 90- 90” targets.
The stakeholders made the call during a regional introductory project meeting on the “Support Advocacy on ARVS and AIDS Commodities Shortage in Ghana” in Sekondi in the Western Region.
“The “90- 90- 90” is an ambitious HIV and AIDS target to ensure that 90 percent of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status, 90 percent of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy and 90 percent of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression by the year 2010”.
A survey conducted within four sentinel sites in the Western Region excluding the Tarkwa Municipality, revealed that the prevalence rates of HIV/AIDs in the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly has risen from 2.8 to 3 percent whiles that of Eikwe rose from 1.6 to 3 percent with Sefwi Asafo moving from 1.7 to 3 percent.
Mr Kwame Ntim-Oppong, Western Regional Coordinator for the Ghana AIDS Commission, expressed concern that as at the first half of 2016, no supplies has been received adding that “having commodities in needed supplies was a plus in fighting the HIV and AIDS menace”.
He said the one –year project would be implemented by Life Relief Foundation, a Non Governmental Organisation, with funds from the US Ambassador’s self-help project.
Mrs Cecilia Oduro, Executive Director of Life Relief Foundation said the project would among others strengthen the capacity of civil society organizations, ensure coordination with partners, as well as increase availability and access to comprehensive prevention, care and treatment.
She said there is the need for a common voice in fighting for medical supplies for persons living with HIV and AIDs.
Mrs Oduro said it is equally important for government to resource local pharmaceutical companies to manufacture drugs for the care of HIV/AIDs.