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HIV and AIDS is still in the system – Dr Stephen Ayisi Addo

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HIV and AIDS is still in the system – Dr Stephen Ayisi Addo

HIV and AIDS is still in the system and remains a threat to societal development, Dr Stephen Ayisi Addo, Programme Manager, National AIDS/STI Control Programme (NACP) has reminded Ghanaians on Wednesday.

“Today people think that HIV is not a problem and they are relaxing, but I want to remind all that HIV and AIDS continues to be a major health and economic problem, which continuous to affect our social life,” he stated.

He said HIV and AIDS was still causing havoc in society and there was the need for broader stakeholder discussion to help fight the disease in the communities.

Dr Ayisi Addo stated this at the second Ghana News Agency Tema Regional Office project dubbed: “GNA-Tema Stakeholder Engagement and Workers Appreciation Day” seminar, which is a platform rolled-out for state and non-state actors to address national issues.

The event also served a motivational mechanism to recognize the editorial contribution of reporters towards national development in general and growth and promotion of the Tema GNA as the industrial news hub.

Dr Ayisi Addo noted that “the mode of transmission of the disease has not changed, however the death toll has reduced due to interventions; however, that does not mean we should lower our quest over the disease”.

He said the prevalence in the general population which constituted men, women, children among others was 1.7 per cent; prevalence among pregnant women was 2.0 per cent, “any one pregnant has had unprotected sex”.

The NACP Programme Manager said that transmission of HIV and AIDS from mother to child was 15 per cent and was not genetic, but was through breastfeeding, delivering process and other methods of transmission.

He said the prevalence among sex workers was 4.6 per cent because they were involved in multiple sexual intercourse and had numerous partners making it easy to contract the diseases.

Mr Ayisi Addo added that the prevalence among men who have sex with men was 18 per cent because sexual intercourse through the anus caused injuries, adding that the anus had micro-organisms and white cells, within which the virus multiplies quickly.

He indicated that the prevalence among people who had Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) was seven per cent because of existing conditions that facilitated the spread of the diseases.

He said HIV and AIDS was not a respecter of persons as it cuts across social, economic, or political status, hence the need for all to stay protected.

Dr Ayisi Addo emphasized the need to intensify education on prevention until a vaccine was found to prevent new infections and reduce the number of HIV positive patient.

Mr Francis Ameyibor, Regional Manager, Ghana News Agency, Tema, explained that the era where journalists sat down in the newsroom waiting for assignment or for event organizers to invite them for coverage was long gone, and said: “it is an anachronistic journalistic practice; you can’t set an agenda when you virtually depend on speeches for news.”

He said society was losing confidence in the media, stressing that “we must therefore move away from the control of politicians and influential people to be truly the voice of the people.

“As the salt of the world, we are gradually losing our role – and will sooner than later be trampled under the feet of society,” he said, and emphasized that the Media needed to draw a line between the quest for commercialization of news and service to the needs of the people,” he said.

Mrs Dzifa Azumah, a Chief Editor, GNA Head Office, advised journalists to devote time in court and crime reporting, “but do so accurately as failure to crosscheck facts could have dire consequences on you and maybe the parties involved in a case”.

Mrs Joyce Benedicta Afutu, Director of Communications and Public Affairs National Commission for Civic Education; Ms Felicia McEwan Anamoah, Head of News, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), Obonu FM, were part of the discussants for the second edition.

Source: GNA

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Open Defecation Is a Health Hazard – Lecturer

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Open Defecation Is a Health Hazard – Lecture

Engineer Mrs. Asantewaa Tanor, a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Civil Engineering, Ho Technical University (HTU), Friday noted that open defecation was not only a health hazard, but also made women and girls vulnerable to attacks and assaults.

She therefore urged individuals, churches, organizations and communities to treat the provision of toilets as their topmost priority.

Madam Tanor who was speaking at a ceremony to mark World Toilet Day celebration at Adaklu Kodzobi in the Adaklu District, noted that provision of toilets in schools also helped keep girls in school during their menstruation.

The Day, which was organised by the Civil Engineering Department of HTU was on the theme “valuing toilets”.

The world toilet day was said to be the initiative of a certain Jack Sim from Singapore who founded the World Toilet Organization, an NGO in the year 2001.

The United Nations General Assembly in its 67th session on July 24, 2013 passed a resolution by which it designated November 19 every year as World Toilet Day.

One hundred and twenty-two member states adopted the resolution.

Madam Tanor said the Day was aimed to create and spread awareness about ideal sanitary practices that promote the health, hygiene and safety of all, especially women.

She hinted that about 3.6 billion people in the world were currently without safely managed sanitation and toilets.

She described the situation as worrying, adding “we must therefore not brush aside the issue of toilets and keep it in the dark.”

Madam Tanor urged those who had toilets in their homes, work places and communities to keep them clean and hygienic always.

Togbe Dzegblade IV, chief of the community, was grateful to the Department for selecting his community among the lot, to celebrate the Day.

He expressed the hope that the bond between the community and the University would be strengthened.
Togbe Dzegblade said the community had a 20-seater functional water closet toilet and urged the people to patronise and always kept

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GHS revises age of recipients of Pfizer vaccine to 15 years

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GHS revises age of recipients of Pfizer vaccine to 15 year

Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, Director-General, Ghana Health Service (GHS), says the Food and Drugs Authority has revised the age of recipients qualified to receive the Pfizer vaccine to 15 years.

He said the revision of the ages from 18 and above to 15 years would help adolescents to be vaccinated to reduce school outbreaks of COVID-19, especially for Senior High School students and reduce the transmission of the disease to adults at home.

Dr Kuma-Aboagye said this at the CHPS Database Dissemination Forum organised as part of efforts aimed at strengthening Community-based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) implementation under its Technical Cooperation Project, ‘CHPS for Life Project’ to accelerate the achievement of Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

He said the country originally registered the ages of 18 and above as qualified recipients of the Pfizer vaccines, whereas the United States of America registered Pfizer for 12 years and above.

The Director-General said the adolescents were the most active group in the society and as expected, they would be moving about more during the upcoming festive season and since COVID-19 was about the movement it was important to get them vaccinated.

He said it would also help the country have proper herd immunity when they were added to the total population of those to be vaccinated.

Dr Kuma-Aboagye stated that they were engaging major stakeholders, including the Ghana Education Service on the modalities on how the vaccination of the adolescents would be carried out.

‘‘We have the consent issues like the adults’ but this is a risk for all of us and I believe that this something we can all get above and be able to vaccinate as many people to protect us all,’’ he said.

He said adolescents who were out of school and within the age group would also be vaccinated.

Dr Kuma-Aboagye said there were some Pfizer vaccines in the country and they were expecting more Pfizer from Covax and other places as well.

 

GNA

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GHS lauds Zipline for facilitating child Immunization in Ghana

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GHS lauds Zipline for facilitating child Immunization in Ghana

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has commended Zipline Ghana Limited, a medical drone delivery company, for its industrial revolution in facilitating the immunization of dozens in the Bibiani-Anhwiaso-Bekwai Municipal of the Western North Region and other parts of the country.

The GHS said the previous challenges that delayed the transport of medications, unavailability of storage systems for vaccines, and administrative bottlenecks would no longer pose a threat to healthcare delivery in the Municipality after Zipline’s Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) made delivery of several components of vaccines in record time.

The government of Ghana in April 2019, signed a Memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Zipline Ghana Limited for the transportation of medical supplies to hard-to-reach communities due to inaccessible roads.

The partnership has since expanded the tentacle of the Company to include distribution of Covid-19 samples for testing and child immunization vaccines delivery nationwide.

In an interaction with the media, Mr Clement Baffour, the Municipal Focal Person for Immunization for the Bibiani-Anhwiaso-Bekwai Municipal, said the involvement of Zipline in the supply chain process of the GHS represented a “game-changer” in the health delivery apparatus.

He added that since the involvement of Zipline, the challenges of delivering vaccines had become a thing of the past.

Mr Baffour expressed the gratitude of the beneficiary communities and called for more support for the company to help reduce the high mortality rate by facilitating emergency delivery of medication to patients.

“I think Zipline has brought a lot of relief to the communities and this directorate in the discharge of its work, for which reason they must be commended for their innovation. Previously, we had to travel to Takoradi to take delivery of vital medications for lack of storage facilities.

“But having witnessed the innovation of Zipline’s drones, it is safe to say that we are out of the woods.

“We will continue to share in the benefit of their work and pray for them to succeed”, Mr Baffour said.

Mr Oheneba Municipal Director of Health Service Opoku-Darko, for Bibiani-Anhwiaso-Bekwai Municipal, spoke fondly of how the company had substantially reduced the defaulter rate in the administration of child immunization vaccines in the municipality.

He said that before the intervention of Zipline, whenever the quantum of vaccines delivered for service provision got finished, there was no backup available and, therefore, most patients often missed the opportunity to take their vaccines at the required time.

“This is now a thing of the past. A parent cannot miss this immunization any longer on the basis of non-availability of the vaccines as Zipline is just a call or text away and they deliver just-in-time to make our work much easier”.

He commended government for the partnership with the company, which had ensured every citizen, irrespective of proximity, has equal access to healthcare delivery in the Country.

GNA

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