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85 Children Tested Positive For HIV Within 7 Days In Taraba


The Director, Treatment Care and Support in the Taraba Action Committee on AIDS, Mr. Ronald Cletus, says 85 children tested positive for HIV in Taraba State within a week .


Cletus disclosed this while speaking   in Jalingo during a two-day training exercise for 60 community mobilisers and testers.


The training was organized by the Society for Family Health in Taraba to stem the transmission of HIV/AIDS among pregnant women and children.


While noting that the training was a part of the effort of stakeholders to improve the rate of HIV testing for children, Cletus said more actions are required to stem the spread of the viral infection in pregnant women and children.


"Last week, 85 children tested positive for HIV/AIDS in the state, and this is worrisome.


"The essence is to get more pregnant women and children to be tested and that is why we are having this refresher training," Cletus said.


He expressed optimism that the gesture would impact the trainees to scale up testing and counseling services.


Also speaking at the training, the Programme Manager, Lafiyan Yara Project of the Society, Aisha Dadi, said that the Society for Family Health organized the two-day training exercise to stem the transmission of HIV/AIDS among pregnant women and children.


Dadi said the exercise was aimed at impacting the trainees with the needed knowledge to build on their skills to enable them to perform optimally.


"We are the first partners for focused intervention on children with HIV/AIDS. It is, therefore, important that everything goes accordingly because we will be setting the pace.


"I urge you to pay attention to your training and ensure that those children in need of support get the needed assistance," she said.


The participants, she said, were drawn from Jalingo, Zing, Karim-Lamido, Bali, Gashaka, Sardauna, Gassol, and Wukari Local Government Areas of the state.


According to her, the training is to build the capacity of community mobilizers to improve HIV case identification, referral, retention in the care of children, adolescents, and pregnant women.


She said that the community mobilizers included traditional birth attendants, village health workers, proprietary and patent medicine vendors as well as mentor mothers.


"You are the ones with the people at the grassroots, you are the ones who interact with them the more and who they can confide in.


"It is, therefore, imperative that you take your work very seriously, starting with this training by paying attention and asking all the necessary questions where you need clarifications," she said.


In his remarks, Dr. Daudu Nyubanga of the State AIDS and STI Control Programme stressed the readiness of the agency to collaborate with partners to combat the scourge in the state.


"We want to expand case identification to ensure quick assistance as this is a collective fight that must be fought from all fronts," he said.


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