HIV services integration critical -Sweta

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HIV services integration critical -Sweta

Chavuma, June 11, 2013, ZANIS–North Western Provincial HIV/Aids Co-ordination Advisor Brian Sweta has called for the integration of voluntary counseling and testing services in HIV outreach activities in  Chavuma and Zambezi.

Mr Sweta says the approach is a strategy to help bring the disease to zero infection.

Mr Sweta said it had come to his attention that health staff were always waiting for isolated funds to provide voluntary counseling and testing-VCT services to communities, instead of taking advantage of other existing outreach activities under maternal and child health services.

He was speaking when a team of partners implementing reproductive health programmes supported by the United Nations Fund for Population (UNFPA) met Chavuma district medical officer Kizito Sampa at his office.

He said although specific resources meant for carrying out HIV activities were slowly diminishing the country was still grappling to bring the disease to zero infection.

Mr Sweta said instead of the health staff waiting for specific resources to conduct VCT, they must integrate its services into other outreach health activities for the benefit of the people.

Meanwhile, Chavuma district medical officer Dr Kizito Sampa assured the team of partners led by UNFPA North Western province programme officer Clara Mwala that his office was giving special attention to reproductive health issues, including HIV/AIDS.

Dr Sampa explained that his office recently intervened by stopping  a practice by some health centre staff who were in the habit of sending away youths seeking family planning services.