By David Remie Wilson
The Secretariat’s Director General, Dr. Alhaji Momodu Sesay said that the Day will be marked in the Kenema District with a free test to be conducted on 100,000 people. He informed that the AIDS Commission recently visited the President and discussed a wide range of issues that included some changes in their strategic plan, funding and other areas.
He noted that strategic programmes by the Government of Sierra Leone, international and national partners, have ensured a strong and comprehensive HIV response in Sierra Leone.
Dr. Sesay said they were recently motivated by the 2011- 2015 national strategic plan; in which various interventions such as the continued scale-up of services for treatment and prevention of mother to child transmission were included. He added that the country has stabilized the HIV prevalence at 1.5% since 2005.
He noted that the Ebola Virus Disease outbreak which started in 2014 not only devastated the bulk of some villages through the spread of the virus; affecting communities around those who were sick and dying, but also, negatively affected health seeking behaviours for otherwise treatable and chronic diseases such as HIV AIDS.
Dr. Alhaji Momodu Sesay stated that HIV AIDS services such as HIV testing, provision of anti-retro viral treatment and in-school programming experienced dramatic drops in uptake and resulted in the loss of many HIV clients to death.
He appealed to the public via the press, to engage with partners within the HIV sector, in order to learn more about the innovative interventions and collaborations that are taking place as the country strives to end AIDS by 2030.