Madang HIV stats alarming

Staff of the ID INAD STI/HIV AIDS at the Modilon General Hospital have been prompted to conduct outreach programs and conduct Voluntary HIV and Syphilis testing for the general public.

Numbers of reported HIV and related sexually transmitted infections (STI) have subsequently increase since the beginning of the year. As of last month, 14 people have been diagnosed as living with HIV.

Dr. Susan Kima and her team are now conducting weekly outreach programs for residents and general public. After three successful outreach programs, a fourth setup was established at the Redscar Traffic Office. They intend to set up eight stations.

The team is encouraging the public to come forward and get tested so they know their status and can get help should they need to.

Clinical HEO, Martina Alumedi, told Loop PNG that those who have been identified, were tested at the hospital. The data was shared with them and they concluded that the number of people with an STI, is increasing. This includes those testing positive to HIV.

Alumedi said the tests are carried out on the spot and results are given after 15 minutes.

Alumedi states that in the past, when people are diagnosed with Tuberculosis (TB), it is possible they may have HIV. Today, recorded cases and data collection have shown that those who have TB or an STI, may have contracted HIV as well.

Counselling is given before any HIV testing is done. Counselling is given everytime a person living with HIV collects their medicine supply.

The team have set up outreach stations at Arasel market at Yabob, Brid Market on Finch road, Beon corrections facility and Redscar market.

Alumedi affirms that from the first 3 locations, they successfully tested more than 100 people. Furthermore, they identified a few men and women living with HIV after results came back from voluntary testing.

The team plans to extend their net range by ‘going rural’ after they complete their eight weekly sites within the main town.

Loop author