Why the fight against AIDS is still a challenge

Ever since the AIDS problem was discovered nearly 30 years ago, the deadly acquired immune deficiency syndrome remains a challenge to the society. Now, it is important that we base our initiatives on some understanding of what has gone wrong.
L-R : Condoms can help to prevent HIV infection ; Assistance from the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Malaria and TB has reduced the costs of access to ARV treatment.
L-R : Condoms can help to prevent HIV infection ; Assistance from the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Malaria and TB has reduced the costs of access to ARV treatment.

Ever since the AIDS problem was discovered nearly 30 years ago, the deadly acquired immune deficiency syndrome remains a challenge to the society.

Now, it is important that we base our initiatives on some understanding of what has gone wrong.

Unfortunately and in many ways, the world, countries and communities have struggled to overcome social and economic challenges posed by HIV/AIDS.

Though there is much campaign and struggle to fight HIV/AIDS, the seemingly unstoppable, disaster and catastrophic human tragedy caused by the disease continues in some parts of the world.

It should be noted that some factors contribute to the failure of success against HIV/AIDS. To some extent silence and denial are a primordial and protective human response to situations that are excessively stressful.

It’s true that human kind cannot bear too much reality, but trying to cover up the existence of AIDS will never lead to mastery over the disease or its impacts. This habit still commonly occurs in families, communities, and in several parts of the world. 

Attitudes, behaviors, insidious associations, and adverse social reactions that discriminate against and stigmatize those with HIV/AIDS drive acknowledgement of the disease into an underground of silence, secrecy, shame and self recrimination.

Lack of correct information on how the disease can be contracted, how it can be prevented, and what those infected can do to ensure that they live a longer life of better quality still remains a challenge.

Today a significant proportion of people do not know how to be protected against HIV infection. Some even do not know that oral and anal sex involve extensive HIV transmission risks. People still think that you can judge by appearances whether or not a person is HIV infected.

The global fund for AIDS, TB and Malaria that was created by the United Nations nearly 10 years ago has helped the international community and national governments to deal with the problem.

This has somehow eased the social and economic challenges as costs for purchase of anti-retro viral drugs and health care of people living with the disease have been minimized.

People should deliver capacity to design good strategies with good response measures. Important to mention is that there is strong focus on short term measures aimed principally at behaviour change, but with minimal attention in the context of the disease.

There is strong need to prevent and overcome poverty, malnutrition, the powerlessness in many societies of women and young girls, inadequate health support services, lack of job opportunities, and the absence of recreational outlets as this is one of the channels of the infection exposure.

Inadequate attention to developing comprehensive strategies that focus on the physical, social, economic, recreational and psychological needs of youth. The war against AIDS will be won when it is won among the youth sooner than later.

Overriding attention to dealing with the disease at the level of the individual, but with little recognition that the disease is also undermining the ability of systems, organizations and institutions to cater for the needs of individuals and society remains a problem.

Failure in many approaches to be sensitive to cultural and religious perceptions and values, with the result that suspicions, intransigence and conflict over peripheral issues such as condom use have tended to overshadow what should be a shared world and community vision of how to respond to the disease.

In order to put a halt to the continuous obscene growth of the disease, we need to take forceful action. We must harness the huge potential of the education sector to prevent further HIV infection. By educating people about the spread and infection of the disease, we are bale to overcome its challenges.

We should mobilize the sector to offer support and care for those who are infected with the disease or are in any way affected by it. Here we need to take steps to keep our society in order and protect it from the in roads and ravages of the disease.

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