Cameroon Tribune (Yaoundé)

Cameroun: New Anti-AIDS Strategy

The plan was confirmed yesterday during Cameroon's HIV/AIDS partnership forum.

Cameroon's HIV/AIDS partnership forum took place yesterday. The major outcome was the validation of the 2006-2010 HIV/AIDS Strategic Plan for the country. The plan will be launched today in Yaounde by the Prime Minister, Head of Government.

Chairing the partnership forum, the Minister of Public Health, Urbain Olanguena Awono, said the 2006-2010 HIV/AIDS Strategic Plan is a new response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic to cover the next five years. It seeks to redress the shortcomings, as well as address the gaps identified in the AIDS programme of the past five years. Some of the priority domains to be tackled in the next five years are: ensure universal access to the prevention for priority target groups, guarantee universal access to treatment and care for children and adults living with HIV/AIDS, promote research and epidemiological surveillance, promote the use of condom, scaling up HIV prevention among youths, scaling up prevention of mother-child-HIV transmission, etc.

The Permanent Secretary of the National AIDS Control Committee, Dr Maurice Fezeu, said funding for the 2006-2010 HIV/AIDS Strategic Plan will come from their traditional sources such as the government, Global Fund for the fight against HIV, Malaria and Tuberculosis, national and international bodies, etc. Dr Fezeu noted that they are also expecting finances from enterprises and other stakeholders.

The main focus of the partnership forum was to reach a consensus on the new Strategic Plan against HIV. Although the HIV strategic plan was drawn in a satisfactory manner involving all the stakeholders concerned in HIV/AIDS control, the Permanent Secretary said there was a need to reach a consensus amongst partners.

Cameroon's HIV/AIDS partnership forum offers private and public sectors involved in the fight against HIV all over the national territory the opportunity to deliberate in a bid to create an appropriate environment to meet the challenges and threat of the AIDS epidemic in Cameroon. Under the patronage of the Minister of Public Health, President of the National AIDS Control Committee, forum participants focused on building a common front against HIV/AIDS, each making the fight against the pandemic a priority and galvanizing the much needed resources to meet the challenges and face the consequences. The forum also served as a medium for the HIV Central Technical Group to educate civil society on their role in the national programme for the fight against AIDS, strengthen networking relations and reinforcing partners' capacity to face the imminent challenges posed by the epidemic.

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