HIV Treatment: Foundation partners FG to enrol additional 100,000 persons

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The Aids Health Care Foundation (AHF), an NGO, says it will enroll additional 100,000 persons on HIV treatment toward ending AIDS as a public health challenge by 2030.

Dr Greg Abraziem, AHF’s Acting Country Programme Manager, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday.

He said that the foundation will do the enrolment in partnership with the Federal Government.

Abraziem said that the project, also called the ‘Fast Track Initiative,’ is a Federal Government-led initiative aimed at bridging the gap of HIV treatment in the country.

“The project is in line with fast tracking HIV treatment and prevention of mother-to-child transmission programmes in Nigeria, which was inaugurated in December 2016.

“The project is aimed at scaling-up HIV treatment with 100,000 people, which includes elimination of mother-to-child HIV transmission, pregnant women, children, adolescents, and adults,’’ he said.

Abraziem stated that 3 Non-Governmental Organisations, which includes UNAIDS, International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) and Aids Healthcare Foundation (AHF) would be the implementing partners of the project.

He said AHF would commence its pilot scheme in Benue, Nasarawa and Cross River States including the Federal Capital Territory, from November, 2016 to November, 2017.

Abraziem added that the organisation would be working with key population, which included female sex workers, homosexuals, bi-sexual persons, who inject drugs as well as adolescents and young persons.

NAN reports that Joint UN programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) said only 28 per cent of people living with HIV in West and Central Africa have access to anti-retro viral drugs.

UNAIDS said it had designed a Catch-Up Plan for West and Central Africa with the aim of fast-tracking HIV/AIDS response in both regions.

The catch-up plan was an essential step toward the realisation of 90-90-90 UNAIDS target by 2020 and ending AIDS as a public health challenge by 2030.

NAN reports that AIDS Healthcare Foundation is the largest non-profit HIV/AIDS organisation in the world, which provides health care to more than 600,000 patients in 36 countries.

AHF Nigeria has been operating in the country since 2011 and presently operates in six states across the country.

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