NYAMASHEKE – The district officer in charge of health and disaster management, Etienne Bankunde, has commended a local health initiative for boosting health standards in the district.
Speaking to reporters from his office at the district headquarters, Bankunde said that the the initiative known as the AIDS Relief project has greatly supported the district in increasing the number of health workers in different health facilities.
“We are blessed and delighted to have AIDS Relief as one of our major health partners in the district,” he said.
“The project has played a significant role by offering comprehensive HIV care, treatment, prevention of mother-to-child transmission, testing and counselling services, including financing renovation of some of the old health centres.”
Bankunde disclosed that AIDS Relief provides quarterly financial support to 17 out of 19 health centres in Nyamasheke to facilitate community mobilization and mobile testing and counselling campaigns.
He appealed to the project management to expand their services to the two remaining health centres of Nganje and Mahembe.
According to Cecile Mugorenejo, one of the beneficiaries in Kagano sector, the community-based treatment support by the Ministry of Health and AIDS Relief has reduced stigma among HIV- positive people in the area.
AIDS Relief Project Manager, Dr. Parfait Rabezanahary, said the project had by December 31, 2009 treated a total of 5,367 people with antiretroviral therapy, 13.3% of them being children.