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HIV/AIDS Prevalence Rate Rises In Anambra State,Hits 8.7%

Ignatius Okpara, Enugu

The prevalence rate of the Human Immune Virus and Acquired Immune  Deficiency Syndrome HIV/AIDS has risen in Anambra, as the state now ranks 4th in Nigeria.

HIVExecutive Director, Anambra State Aids Control Agency, (ANSACA) Dr O.J Ndibe, who disclosed this said the prevalence rate has hit 8.7 percent in the area.

The ANSACA boss spoke in Awka during a public presentation and adoption of the state Monitoring and Evaluation plan on HIV intervention put together by Measure and Evaluation, Implementation partners and the Anambra State government.

He said  the State now ranks 4th in Nigeria, stressing that the report was based on the 2014 survey.

According to Dr. Ndibe, to check the rising trend of new HIV cases, ANSACA has adopted a multi sectoral HIV response by synergizing with UNICEF, FH1360, PPFN, Local Action Committees in Aids, Civil Societies and the media, for proper grass roots sensitization.

The plan he said, was produced by the Anambra Aids Control Agency (ANSACA) with Technical and financial support by Measure Evaluation, adding that it will go a long way to sensitize the public on HIV/AIDS.

In his speech at the event, the state Commissioner for health, Dr Joe Akubuike, hinted that the state has joined the league of states in Nigeria that have produced a monitoring and evaluation plan in HIV intervention.

Dr. Joe Akabuike noted that “when programme is pragmatically planned, it is very useful to put a benchmark or indicators for its assessment which should be a continuous process”.

He however, expressed readiness of the Governor Willy Obiano led administration in the State to build the capacity of the Measure Evaluation personnel with a view to bringing them in tune with the current global M & E trends as stipulated in the new M & E on HIV intervention.

The Commissioner, who spoke through the Director of Primary Health and Disease Control, Ministry of Health, Dr. Chukwudi Okoye noted that monitoring and evaluation is not highly technical, adding that it is easy to handle when the indicators are applied in any development work.

Also speaking, the state coordinator, Measure and Evaluation, Mr. Jeff Oluwagbemigba explained that the states M&E plan on HIV intervention is a well articulated document designed to facilitate proper documentation and result based road map that will positively encourage more intervention from development partners.

He noted that the process of the state M&E Plan Production, originated from the initial assessment of its M&E system through a 12 component global tool and the brainstorming sessions of all key players in HIV management.

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