The Malawi government has hailed new innovations in HIV health service delivery spearheaded by the United States government to help more people to receive Anti-Retro-viral Therapy (ART) in a free environment.
Director of Clinical Services in the Ministry of Health and Population Dr George Chidothi Mwale made the sentiments during the symbolic opening of the state of the art Prefabricated HIV Testing Services Clinics at Likangala health center in Zomba on Monday.
Dr Mwale said the innovation is timely as it addresses issues of space as well as stigma and discrimination.
“As government we are thriving to achieve universal health coverage where we want every person with HIV virus to be put on treatment and also those who do not know their status to go and get tested without any challenges,” Dr Mwale said.
Over 8,000 people on ART treatment in Zomba district alone will benefit from the 15 prefabricated clinics which have been spread across most health centers in the district.
Meanwhile, Dr Mwale has urged people in Zomba to fully patronize the facilities to improve their viral suppression.
District Commissioner for Zomba, Emmanuel Bambe expressed his satisfaction as the clinics are in line with the district’s 2017/2022 strategic plan to put all people with HIV in the district on proper treatment.
Bambe said “We have about 35 health centers in Zomba district and out of those we have received 15 of these facilities which is very commendable but we also appeal that the remain 20 or so facilities should also benefit to foster our efforts in putting these people on treatment.”
The clinics has been constructed by the United States government through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) as a global response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Speaking on behalf of the US government, Mission Director for USAID, Littleton Tazewell said Malawi is making strides towards improving the health of people living with HIV.
There are about 463 prefabricated HTS clinic across the country including pharmacies to improve the storage space as well as right to privacy of patients.