By Francisca UKAZU
With the aim to build capacity for the implementation of HIV strategy for Adolescent and Young People, AYP, stakeholders in the health sector brainstorm on its content and programmes.
Speaking to journalists at a capacity building meeting held in Lagos the Senior Special Assistance to the governor of Lagos State on HIV/AIDS, Dr. Fisher Oladipupo said “it is due to the high percentage of prevalence among young people living with HIV that informed the need to carry out intervention.
“This group of young people are critical in addressing the spread of the virus and so the need to focus on them in reducing and mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS in the state.”
Also speaking at the event,Mrs Ezinne Okey-Uchendu who represented the Director, Programme Coordination Department of National Agency for the Control of AIDS, NACA,
Dr. Akudo Ikpeazu for the Director General Dr. Sani Aliyu said at the national level, the HIV plan for Adolescents has been launched and NACA will ensure all states of the Federation adopts the plan.
According to the DG, the strategy covers different areas for implementation and the plan includes; HIV treatment services, prevention programme for AYP, we also have programmes targeting the pregnant AYP and also activities using the minimum intervention package in addressing the AYP.
Dr Aliyu also said the drugs are accessible using the different hospitals that are both comprehensive HIV services site and as well as the primary health care facility in different states.
In terms of stigmatisation, Aliyu added that NACA and state agencies on HIV/AIDs are working to ensure that awareness is created and also ensuring that people get to know the AYP and prevention strategies going forward.
With the gradual withdrawal of donor agencies from Nigeria, Dr. Aliyu stated that NACA is currently funding Taraba and Abia state but there are other activities going on in other state.
According to statistics by National Demographic Health Survey 2013, the age of first sexual intercourse among young adult is between 15 to 24 years, also the National HIV/AIDS and Reproductive Health Survey, NARHS 2012 stated that multiple sexual partners for male between age 15 to 19 years is at 29.9 percent and the female of same age is put at 6.9 percent.