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Oyo State Agency for the Control of AIDS (OYSACA) said it is targeting no fewer than 10, 000 people for HIV screening throughout the state as part of activities to mark this year’s World’s AIDS Day.
The agency said the screening is targeted at the key drivers of the epidemic-female sex workers, men who sleep with men, people who inject drugs, and transgender, in order to curb the spread of the virus amongst the group, as well as the general public.
Chairperson of the agency who is also the wife of the state Governor, Mrs. Tamunominini Makinde made the disclosure on Thursday during a press conference to herald the commemoration of the 2020 World AIDS.
Themed “United to End AIDS amidst Covid-19, Get Tested”, Mrs. Makinde said this year’s theme joins a growing list of challenges of some of the events that are threatening the fight to end AIDS.
She added that the world’s attention has been shifted to the Covid-19 pandemic which ravaged many things, including lives and livelihood, with high mortality and loss of job globally.
Noting that the coming of Covid-19 has attracted the attention of the whole world, Mrs Makinde however said the crisis of the novel coronavirus has also been a wake-up call and an opportunity to do things differently, better, and together.
Speaking through the Executive Secretary, OYSACA, Dr. Lanre Abass, the wife of the Governor noted that “It is very crucial at this time to work harmoniously and show love, eliminate stigmatisation and discrimination, individualised centre attention and grounding our responses in human rights and gender-responsive approaches that are key to ending the simultaneously occurring pandemics of HIV and Covid-19.’’
Relying on the NAIIS technical report of 2018, she said the state HIV prevalence rate still stands at 0.9 percent.