Addis Ababa October 07/2017 Ethiopia has launched and reinvigorated HIV/AIDS prevention and control campaigns to meet the 90-90-90 target by 2020.
The 90-90-90 target is a plan to get 90 percent of people living with HIV/AIDS diagnosed, 90 percent of diagnosed people get access to antiretroviral treatment, and 90 percent of people in treatment with fully suppressed viral load.
Federal HIV and AIDS Prevention and Control Office (HAPCO) Deputy Director-General, Abraham Gebremedhin told ENA that the campaign includes reviewing the nationwide prevention methods taken in the previous years.
A national population-based survey has been conducted to assess efforts made in prevention and control over the past fifteen years.
The Deputy Director-General said the government is working to implement new approaches like self-testing, comprehensive and integrated community comprehensive HIV/AIDS services and treatments.
The government is also planning to launch HIV/AIDS prevention program at place of work by mainstreaming the program in various government institutions utilizing the budget allotted to them, he added.
He stated that HAPCO will also putting in place comprehensive and inclusive prevention and control strategies to meet the target.
“Continuous awareness creation activities and training need to be conducted across the country”
Ministry of Health State Minster, Dr. Kebede Worku said the country needs to restart prevention works to stop the prevalence of the virus and stop the disease to attain “Zero-AIDS” by 2030.
According to him, the responses to the HIV/AIDS epidemic have shown considerable progress and achieved encouraging results.
“Apart from designing midterm plans for the implementation of programs in the health sector, special programs ranging from five to six years have been implemented over the previous years and commendable results have been registered in curbing the proliferation of the virus in the country.”
Despite the achievements, the virus is spreading throughout the country. “Even though some people think that the virus has stopped spreading, it is actually spreading silently”, the State Minster revealed.
"Generally speaking, out of the 64 percent of the expenditure allotted to public health comes from government budget while only 36 percent is generated from donors. Ministry of Health needs to scale up its program intervention in fighting the virus. Even then, the current rate of proliferation of the disease warrants the concerted efforts of the public and all partners in the battle against the virus", he said.
HAPCO Multi-sectoral Response Director, Kifle Mitiku said on his part the country can meet the target set by UNAIDS if each and every sector gives priority to HIV/AIDS.
“We have ample experience on ways and means to prevent and control HIV/ AIDS, provided that the federal and regional councils as well as other stakeholders are committed to the prevention and treatment of the disease”, he said.
On the other hand, the United State Agency for International Development (USAID) has launched a new five-year community HIV/AIDS care and treatment project last month.
The projects which consume 40 million USD are meant to support the government of Ethiopia to achieve the 90-90-90 target through community-based HIV/AIDS care and treatment approaches.