HIV/AIDS NACA decries 8.2 % disease prevalence in Nasarawa

The high rate of the deadly HIV in Nasarawa State has become worrisome to the National Agency for the Control of AIDS.

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Nurse gives a red ribbon to a woman to mark World Aids Day at the entrance of Emilio Ribas Hospital, in Sao Paulo play A nurse (L) hands out a red ribbon to a woman, to mark World Aids Day, at the entrance of Emilio Ribas Hospital, in Sao Paulo December 1, 2014. (REUTERS/Nacho Doce)
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The National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) on Wednesday decried the high rate of HIV/AIDS in Nasarawa State.

Mrs Ezeokafor Chidiebere, the NACA’s Senior Programme Officer, who led the agency’s delegation to Lafia, said that the visit was sequel to the alarming rate of HIV/AIDS in the state.

Chidiebere said that the visit was aimed at seeking more synergy with critical stakeholders on preventive measures and financial support from the state government to enable them to fight the scourge effectively.

According to her, the 8.2 per cent prevalence of HIV in the state was worrisome, hence the need for collaboration among the stakeholders.

Chidiebere said that the World Bank Intervention project against the spread of HIV/AIDS in the country was solely driven by donor funding which was not enough to curtail its spread.

“We are here on a supportive supervisory visit and will visit all the implementing areas.

“We are here also to solicit for more funding because majority of the funding is donor-driven,’’ she said.

Chidiebiere said that the urgency for the visit was because the World Bank project would end in April 2017, hence the need for continuity of sponsorship to fight resistance against the scourge.

She said that if the needed support was not guaranteed before the end of 2016, the prevalence in the state could rise above 8.2 per cent and 3.4 per cent nationwide.

In his remarks, Dr Daniel Iya, the state Commissioner for Health, expressed readiness of the state government to support NACA in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Iya, represented by Alhaji Hamza Abubakar, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, said, “Your request for support will be promptly forwarded to Gov Umaru Al-Makura for prompt action.

“The assistance of the state government is paramount.’’