Health News of Tuesday, 4 December 2012
The Eastern Regional Technical Coordinator of the Ghana AIDS Commission, Ms Golda Grace Asante, has explained that HIV infection is not as a result of witchcraft or curse.
She called on family heads to ensure that their relations who had contracted HIV attend hospital.
Ms Asante was speaking at this year’s World AIDS Day. at Finte, a farming community on Atimpoku- Ho with a high population of teenage mothers.
The celebration, which was organized by the Eastern Regional AIDS Committee and the Asuogyaman District AIDS Committee, was marked by male and female football competition among teams from Osiabura, Frankadua, and Apegusu and Finte communities.
There was also male and female bicycle competition, which was organized by Vida Cycling Program, a non-governmental organization (NGO), committed to the promotion of cycling.
Ms Asante regretted that despite efforts being made at reducing HIV infections in the country, many people do not know their HIV status, how to protect themselves against risky sexual relations, and some mothers and children are dying from AIDS.
She advised young people who could not abstain from sex to use condom to protect themselves against sexually transmitted diseases.
Ms Asante explained that the presence of high numbers of teenage mothers in the community was an indication that some young people were involved in unprotected sex.
She appealed to pregnant women to attend ante-natal clinic to know their HIV status so that the unborn babies of those who would test positive would be protect from contracting the disease.
Mr Johnson Ahiakpor, Asuogyaman District Chief Executive, appealed to the youth to avoid indiscriminate sex.
Mr Brian Tsikpor, Asuogyaman District HIV focal person, explained that women cycling and soccer were added to the programme, to rally more women for education on the prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV.
Ms Vida Juliet Vivie, Director of the NGO, appealed for sponsorship to enable her to develop cycling in the area to produce professional cyclists for the country.