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The Anambra State Aids Control Agency has disclosed that the Southeastern state has now become the fifth highest in Nigeria in terms of HIV transmission among people between 15 to 49 years.
The Executive Director of the agency, Mr Johnbosco Ementa, made this disclosure during a two-day stakeholders meeting organised by the body in Awka, on Thursday.
Ementa pointed out that the forum was organised for various stakeholders to brainstorm on how best to scale up a campaign to eliminate HIV transmission in the state.
He pointed out that the meeting was an opportunity to interact, share knowledge and highlight challenges facing the state in terms of HIV transmission, with a view to addressing them.
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He lamented the situation saying that the agency was working tirelessly with stakeholders to mitigate the impact.
He said, ‘It is unfortunate to note that Anambra is the fifth highest in Nigeria in terms of HIV transmission among people aged 15 to 49 years.
‘The agency is working tirelessly to ensure its reduction or elimination by promoting behavioural change in both low and high population, increase awareness and sensitisation among the general population.
‘We are are also working with targeted stakeholders, to mitigate the impact of HIV/AIDS in the state.
‘Let me also inform you that plans are underway to domesticate the 2014 HIV Anti Stigma Bill in Anambra State.’
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Afam Obidike, on his part, called for more efforts to reduce HIV transmission in the state.
Obidike, who was represented by the Director, Public Health, Dr Afam Anaeme, said that HIV prevention is a task that should be accomplished and sustained in the state.
‘The pattern of transmission of the disease has made prevention a bit difficult in the state but Governor Chukwuma Soludo’s administration is determined to give residents
quality healthcare service delivery.
I urge the agency to do more to ensure that the transmission of HIV is drastically reduced in the state, he said.