The Executive Secretary of Adamawa State Agency for the Control of HIV/AIDS (ADSACA), Dr Steven John, said so far only 33,000 out of the 42,000 people living with HIV/AID in Adamawa are accessing drugs.
John made this known Monday in Yola at a ceremony to commemorate 2019 World AIDS Day.
John who spoke on efforts by the agency and its partners to contained the epidemic in the state, said steady progress had been recorded with HIV prevalence dropping from 6.8 percent in 2008 to 1.2 percent in 2019.
He said the state now has 400 testing and counseling centres (HCT), 100 centres for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission and 20 Anti retroviral drugs collection centres in the state.
While lauding the role of partners like FHI 360, HIFAS, JAPIGO, RISE, NEPWAN and CBOs for their role, John observed that for more success to be recorded, everyone in the community needed to know his or her HIV status.
He listed lack of funding as the major problem affecting the agency from effectively discharging its responsibilities in containing the epidemic.
Speaking on behalf of the Ministry of Health, the state Director, Public Health, Dr Bwalki Dilli, said the state government was not comfortable with the present 1.2 percent prevalence in the state and would support measures to bring it to zero percent.
Also speaking at the occasion, the State Chairman of Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS, Ms Fara James, lauded ADSACA and its partners for their effort in the fight against the scourge and reiterated the commitment of her members to be actively involved.
James lamented marginalization of people living with HIV/AIDS in areas of appointment and empowerment Programmes of Adamawa government and urged for measures to address that.
“Now that the governor’s wife, Hajiya Lami Fintiri is here to be part of this event, we want her to be our mother and communicate out plight to the government,” James pleaded.
In her remarks, Adamawa First Lady, Hajiya Lami Fintiri, lauded the ADSACA and its partners for their collective effort to combat HIV/AIDS in the state and urged them not to relent.
“Let’s all remain focused in this fight as we approach the finishing line,” Fintiri said.
Highlight of the occasion is the sharing of testimonies by some women living with AIDS on how PMTCT help them deliver babies that are HIV negative.