Ghana has lowest HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in sub-region

Ghana’s HIV/AIDS prevalence rate is 1.7%, the lowest rate so far in West Africa, according to statistics from the Ghana Demographic and Health Survey (GDHS).

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The prevalence rate has been dropping from 3.1% in 2004 to 2.7% in 2005 to the current level.

Madam Florence Ayisi Quartey, Assistant Research Officer, Information, Research and Advocacy Division (IRAD) of the Department of Children, said this at a Regional Consultative Workshop on the preparation and compilation of Ghana’s Report to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child at Wa.

She said the awareness rate in Ghana was very high but noted that there was still a significant gap between level of awareness and behavioural change.

Mad Quartey said according to the 2008 GDHS report on HIV/AIDS, almost all men and women in Ghana had some level of knowledge about the disease.

The report also said 69% of women aged 15-49 and 77% of men aged 15-49 know that HIV could be prevented by using condoms and by limiting sex to one faithful partner.

It further stressed that only 25% of women and 33% of men aged 15-49 had comprehensive knowledge about HIV.

Mad Quartey said in view of this a national HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) Policy as well as a national HIV/AIDS Strategic Framework were developed to further educate the public.

She said a five-year Strategic Plan of Work from 2006 to 2010 had also been developed.

Although the government had been doing well to support the health sector there was still the need to increase its resource allocation towards health issues especially that of children, Mad Quartey said.