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Ghana Army launches HIV/AIDS prevention campaign

The Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) on Thursday launched HIV/AIDS road map strategy to effectively respond to the disease and mitigate stigma and discrimination against patients in GAF community.

The 19-page booklet emphasises HIV prevention, particularly mother to child transmission, slashing new infections by 50 per cent, and combating mortality and morbidity in the next three years of its implementation.

Col Dr Samuel Adjei, Commanding Officer of 37 Military Hospital launched the project at the closing session of a training programme under the GAF quality HIV/AIDS prevention and care services.

The project is being funded by the Department of Defence, under the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS with Jhpiego – an affiliate of John Hopkins University, providing the technical support.

About 412 GAF staff members were schooled on HIV testing and counseling, stigma and discrimination reduction, promotion of infection control and provision of supportive supervision to health staff at the seven garrisons.

Col Adjei said the policy document would serve as a major resource material for dissemination during HIV/AIDS education programme.

He expressed delight that experiences from the project have been documented to serve as a guide towards mitigating the effects of the disease among soldiers and their families, civilian employees and local communities.

He said stigma and discrimination, hindered preventive efforts as well as access to available HIV services, which would be tackled under the project.

The plan will also reactivate the use of peer educators as a successful intervention strategy used in the past to provide HIV education and support, while staff capacity would be given a boost to employ the needed interventions.

GNA

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