HIV/Aids Combination Prevention Strategy launched

02 Dec 2015 16:20pm
KEETMANSHOOP, 02 DEC (NAMPA) – Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Bernhard Haufiku on Tuesday launched the Combination Prevention Strategy to combat HIV and Aids during the World Aids Day event in Lüderitz.
The strategy comprises social and behaviour change communication, HIV testing and counselling, voluntary medical male circumcision, condom use and prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT).
“I sincerely believe that if we employ these key interventions, we surely will move closer to realising zero new infections and zero Aids-related deaths,” Haufiku said in his speech made available to Nampa after the event.
Continued resource investment will be required to implement these initiatives, the minister said. He also acknowledged that external donor funding for HIV care in general was decreasing.
However, the American government on Tuesday pledged a further N.dollars 475 million over the next two years to upscale HIV treatment in Namibia.
In 2015, America committed over N.dollars 640 million and to date the biggest economy in the world contributed over N.dollars 15 billion to Aids-relief in Namibia.
The other key contributor in Namibia to fight HIV, tuberculosis and malaria is the Global Fund.
Haufiku said Cabinet directed the Ministry of Health and Social Services to develop a strategy to increase domestic resources to ensure that the gains made over the years in curbing HIV in Namibia are not eroded.
Namibia is recognised globally as a capable performer where HIV reduction and treatment is concerned.
The Ministry of Health and Social Services Sentinel Survey results show that the country is near eliminating PMTCT and has stabilised the epidemic rate from 22 per cent in 2002 to 16,9 per cent in 2014.
World Aids Day 2015 was commemorated under the theme ‘Getting to Zero: Zero new HIV infections, Zero discrimination and Zero Aids-related deaths’.
It has been the recurrent theme since 2011 and will end this year.