The United States’ government will continue to provide support to the Ministry of Health and Social Services to build suitable and high quality HIV care and treatment programmes within communities in Namibia.
Ambassador of the United States to Namibia, Lisa Johnson made these remarks at the official handover of a Community-based Anti-Retroviral (CBART) Clinic at Akutsima village in the Omusati Region’s Okahao Constituency on Wednesday.
The clinic is sponsored by the US government, through the American President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
Johnson stated that the government of her country support Namibia HIV care and treatment through PEPFAR, Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and USAIDS.
The US diplomat congratulated the people of Akutsima for working together in identifying the need for their community clinical ART services.
“I also congratulate you for showing that unity of community, which encouraged CDC Namibia, through PEPFAR funding, to provide community based anti-retroviral therapy (CBART) sites in the Omusati Region,” Johnson told the Akutsima people.
Omusati has five PEPFAR-funded CBART sites at Eemwandi, Okafitu, Epalela, Onanyalala and then Akutsima.
According to Johnson, the CBART sites will make the provision of HIV and other health care services to the community easier.
“These services include not just antiretroviral medication, but also screening for minor ailments, immunizations,, weighing monitoring for children under 5 years, prescription refill for other chronic conditions and follow-up care for mothers who have recently given birth,” cited Johnson.
Speaking at the same event, Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Bernard Haufiku, pointed out that the aim of the CBART at Akutsima is to reduce the long distance that people of the area used to travel to access health care services at the Okahao District Hospital.
As part of its vision, Haufiku said, his Ministry is committed to making sure that all health care services are brought closer to the people.
He, however, noted that the government cannot do it alone and as such, it needs support from its partners.
On HIV/Aids, Haufiku expressed concern that men remain unresponsive to the call for HIV testing and getting treatment if necessary.
He suggested all Namibians join the fight against HIV/AIids to break the “backbone” of the disease and to ensure that Namibian people are 90 per cent tested for HIV and that those tested HIV-positive are 90 per cent on treatment.
Akutsima is situated some 52 kilometres from Okahao.
- Title: Akutsima gets CBART facility
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- Date: 4:51 PM