Zambian Govt boosts HIV treatment
By Times Reporter
THE Government has since 2008 placed an additional 300,000 people, among them 23,000 children on anti-retroviral treatment in its continued effort to mitigate the impact of HIV/AIDS pandemic.
In his message on the eve of the World AIDS Day that falls today, President Rupiah Banda said his Government would not slacken in instituting measures that would reduce the further spread of HIV/AIDS whose consequences to Zambia were unimaginable.
With this year’s World AIDS Day theme being, ‘Access to Prevention, Treatment, Care and Support is My Right,’ Mr Banda said it was his Government’s goal to eliminate the transfer of HIV/AIDS from pregnant mothers to their unborn children by 2015.
He said this in a statement issued by his special assistant for Press and public relations Dickson Jere.
“The Government has provided access to anti-retroviral medicines (ARVs) for an additional 47,000 HIV pregnant women in the past year and in total the drugs are now being provided to 89 per cent of Zambians living with HIV/AIDS,” President Banda said.
The Government’s achievement in meeting HIV/AIDS-related national health targets in 2009 had included testing 1,550,000 people, while 4,000 new doctors and nurses had been recruited into the Zambian healthcare system since 2008.
Mr Banda was confident that Zambia could still control the spread of HIV/AIDS despite the pandemic being a problem.
“Although HIV/AIDS is a global problem, it is one which we in Zambia can control. This is a condition suffered by many people in Zambia and I strongly believe we can and must combat it.
“I am proud to say that my Government has faced this problem head on, taking the lead in efforts to prevent further spread and delivering real solutions to those in our country who are infected and affected,” he said.
The Government had widened access to the vital anti-retroviral drugs, which were helping those living with HIV/AIDS to manage the disease and lead a healthier and more productive life.
The Government had also prioritised the boosting of health provision throughout Zambia to build a stronger and more productive nation.
He said the central part of this had been strengthening AIDS prevention work, treatment and support of Zambians living with HIV/AID