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Presidential Fast Track Initiative Launch

Presidential Fast Track Initiative Launch

Presidential Fast Track Initiative Launch

His Excellency, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, The President of the Republic of Uganda, on Tuesday, June 6, 2017 launched the Presidential Fast-Track

World AIDS Day Celebrations

World AIDS Day Celebrations

World AIDS Day Celebrations

On 1st December 2017, Uganda joined the rest of the world to commemorate World AIDS Day (WAD. World AIDS Day…

Debates in Schools

Debates in Schools

Debates in School

In partnership with the National debate Council, Uganda AIDS Commission engaged students throughout the country to debate HIV/AIDS related issues. 

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Uganda AIDS Commission

Is the Ending of AIDS by 2030 In Uganda Possible?

Published in the New Vision on 09-Jan-2017

Author: Reuben Twinomujuni - Head Communication & Advocacy

On June 6, 2017, His Excellency, The President of the Republic of Uganda launched the Presidential Fast-Track Initiative to end AIDS as a public health threat in Uganda by 2030. At the same function, the President also appended his signature on the Presidential commitment to end AIDS in Uganda.

Several representatives from local and international organizations like UNAIDS, UNDP, WHO, Uganda’s development partners, Diplomatic corps, Civil Society organizations, top government officials, Religious, Political and district leaders, among other dignitaries attended this launch.

Uganda AIDS Commission, a government body mandated to oversee, plan and coordinate AIDS prevention and control activities throughout Uganda and the body responsible for spearheading this Presidential Initiative, hit the road and traversed the country meeting nearly everybody at the district popularizing the initiative and paving the way for the President’s planned regional engagements as the country prepares to see the end of AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

During these district engagements, one question persisted: Is the ending of AIDS by 2030 in Uganda Possible? Leading to other questions like: will you kill those who are already positive? The Commission was further reminded that there are only thirteen years left to 2030. They were wondering what kind of magic wand the Commission will wave to end AIDS come 2030.

All these are valid questions considering factors like the presence of sex workers in almost every trading center throughout Uganda, increase in infections among young people, migrant and mobile populations to urban centers, an upsurge in boda boda business, high levels of poverty, and much more.

Ending AIDS a public health threat means that by the year 2030, there’s:

Zero new infections, meaning people purposively protect themselves against HIV/AIDS. This means that people have gone for HIV testing, they have received their results; those who are negative continue to live negatively by Abstaining from sex if they don’t have a sex partner, those who have a partner are faithful to that one partner and those who find themselves unable to stick to one partner for whatever reason, they use a condom correctly and every time they have sex with someone whose HIV status they don’t know. For those who find themselves HIV positive after testing, they ask to immediately be started on medication (ARVs). This requires that they consistently take their medication as told to them by a health worker. This will help suppress their viral load.

Zero stigma and discrimination means that people who are living with HIV are free to talk about it, are free to seek medication and have no fear within themselves, thinking that people will discriminate against them when they open up and talk about their status. It also means that people will no longer discriminate against those who are living with HIV.

Finally, ending AIDS as a public health threat means that there’s zero AIDS related deaths. Currently, 28,000 people die of AIDS related illness every year. This means seventy seven people dying every day! This is alarmingly high and real. Ending AIDS as a public health threat by 2030 means that these deaths are no more. It means that people live with HIV but because they are constantly taking medication as prescribed by health workers, they live a normal uninterrupted life. They are healthy and productive; they are faithful and they use all forms of protection against spreading the disease.

Our question: Is the ending of aids by 2030 in Uganda possible?By now must have changed to: How is it possible?

Test and treat

The Ministry of Health rolled out the Test and Treat policy where, after testing and receiving results, whoever is found positive doesn’t have to wait for some time. No. such a person is immediately started on drugs (ARVS). These drugs don’t completely heal the disease; they enable the person living with the virus to live the usual life of productivity. With this, one is assured of longevity of productive life.

Political will

In Uganda, there’s high level of political will to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030 exhibited in various ways: on Friday, November 8th, 2013, the President publicly tested for HIV/AIDS. Before testing, only two million people were testing per year but thereafter, the number of people who tested skyrocketed to eight million! This is a roaring success as a result of leading by example. The President, on June 6th 2017 launched a Presidential Initiative and signed a commitment to end AIDS in Uganda. His ability to fight and end AIDS is tried and tested. With his foot on the pedal, we will end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

Her Excellency, the First Lady also clearly showed her commitment to end AIDS by championing the elimination of Mother to child transmission of HIV/AIDS. Her direct involvement resulted in a sharp decline of the number of Babies who acquire HIV from their HIV positive mothers, which dropped from 28,000 per year (2011) to less thsn 3,500 per year (2015). Maternal to Child transmission of HIV has been reduced by 87%. Intensive campaigns lasted only two years. It is possible to end AIDS as a public health threat in Uganda within the remaining thirteen years.

Other leaders at all levels and of all categories have also been involved in efforts to end AIDS in Uganda. Ugandans now only need individual commitment and changing of lifestyles, getting men on board in the fight, which is being worked on and by 2030; Uganda will achieve the global target to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

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Contact Details

Postal Address:
Uganda AIDS Commission,
Plot 1–3 Salim Bay Road,
P. O. Box 10779,
Kampala – Uganda

+256-414 699502
+256-414 699503