About 16, 588 people living with HIV in Bauchi state have been enrolled for treatment by the Bauchi State Agency for the Control of HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Leprosy and Malaria (BACATMA) as against 13, 503 in 2017.
Executive Chairman of the Agency, Dr Muhammad Sambo Alkali disclosed this yesterday during the occasion of the 2018 World AIDS Day celebration organized by BACATMA in the state.
He said, “this year is highly symbolic’ in the history of AIDS in the state as the fight against the disease clocked 30 years with a significant reduction in the spread of the infection from 6.8 per cent in 2001 to 0.6 per cent this year”.
According to him, the agency had also procured and distributed 120, 000 units of HIV rapid test kits to 323 health facilities to strengthen prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV revealing however that 72 infants have been diagnosed HIV positive this year.
Alkali also noted that since its establishment in 2008, BACATMA was able to organize and support matched making marriage of 156 couples living with HIV added that the wedlock resulted to the delivery of more than 70 babies who were tested HIV negative.
“World AIDS Day first began in 1988 and we hold them so that we can call for the compassion and support that is needed to stop this epidemic and to lessen its impact.
It is observed to draw media and public attention to an epidemic that has affected people and communities in every part of the world. Truly, this is a disease that knows no boundaries whether of income, religion, gender or nationality”.
Alkali who said “the theme of the World AIDS Day this year is “KNOW YOUR STATUS” and this is where communities, civil society organizations, partners and media needs to put more effort in our dreams to attend 90, 90, 90 by 2020″.