Namibia getting close to controlling HIV pandemic: Experts

24 Jun 2016 08:50am
OKONGO, 24 JUN (NAMPA) - The American ambassador to Namibia says experts have indicated that Namibia is getting close to controlling its HIV pandemic.
As such, the next two years will be crucial in terms of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and tuberculosis (TB) treatments, said Thomas Daughton in a statement read on his behalf at Okongo in the Ohangwena Region on Wednesday.
The occasion marked the handing over of eight prefabricated dispensary buildings to the Ministry of Health and Social Services’ Okongo District.
“This is why the U.S. government has decided to redouble its efforts in Namibia over the next two years. We want to help the Namibian government reach the target it has set to become the first African country to meet the 90/90/90 goal,” stated.
The 90/90/90 goal means identifying 90 per cent of all people who are HIV positive, getting 90 per cent of them onto lifesaving antiretroviral therapy (ART) and achieving viral suppression in 90 per cent of the people taking ART.
He said that in order to help Namibia reach the said target, the U.S. government will provide additional N.dollars 500 million over the next two years for the 90/90/90 goal.
“In an effort to reach that all-important 90/90/90 target, the U.S. government will fund an additional 431 critical health care and support positions in Namibia, including doctors, nurses, clinical mentors, pharmacists and counselors,” the U.S. diplomat added.
The U.S. will also provide 14 modular houses for health care workers and 18 vehicles to reach even more patients in rural areas.
So far the American people have devoted more than N.dollars 16 billion to help combat HIV and TB in Namibia since 2003.
Daughton pointed out that his government last month again committed to fund another N.dollars 600 million to support the Namibian government’s plan to fight HIV and TB in 2017.
The donated prefab dispensary buildings are the first of 40 facilities that will be delivered to health districts in Namibia. The Oshifitu, Oupili, Oshitishiwa, Onghalulu, Oshalumbu, Olukula, Onamihonga and Omutwewomunhu villages in Okongo will benefit from the donated facilities.