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CISHAN Calls For Including Treatment Of Persons Living With HIV/AIDS In NHIS

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The Civil Society for HIV/AIDS in Nigeria (CISHAN), A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) has called for the inclusion of treatment and care of persons living HIV/AIDS in the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

Coordinator of the organisation in Plateau, Rev. Chis Damcher, Damcher, made the call on Saturday in Jos at a press briefing to commemorate the 2019 World AIDS Day.

Damcher said if the treatment and care of those living with HIV/ AIDS were included in the NHIS, it would go a long way in fighting the spread of the disease.

He said the step would also help address the issue of donor-fatigue, as according to him, most donors sponsoring treatment and care were already pulling out.

He pointed out that 85 per cent of HIV responses were from donors, while 15 per cent was from the Federal Government.

He added that the move would further underscore government’s commitment to the fight against the global scourge.

Similarly, Dr. Pukup Bupwatda, the Chairman Planning Committee of the 2019 World’s Aids Day in the state said theme of this year’s event “Know Your Status’’ was appropriate.

He said the fight could not be won without people knowing their status, by first going for voluntary test.

Dr. Kunden Kamshak, the Commissioner of Health disclosed that Plateau’s HIV prevalence rate was 5.9 per cent based on the 2014 survey by the Federal Ministry of Health.

He also revealed that based on the state’s data analysis of HIV/AIDS services in 2017 and the first semester of 2019, there had been a decline.

Kamshak disclosed that in 2017, 50,573 males and 64,609 females were tested, with 2,512 males and 4,649 females tested positive.

He said in the first semester of 2019, out of 75,929 males and 83, 445 females tested, 1,047 males and 2,252 females were positive.

He said the state would soon commence an HIV/AIDS Index Testing, where health workers would go into the communities to test people, in a bid to achieve the 90 per cent “Know Your Status’’ campaign.

He thanked the donors and other partners for their collaboration in the fight against HIV/AIDS in the state, describing the disease as a public health concern.

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