At a briefing in Ikeja to mark the 2016 World AIDS Day with theme: “Hands Up for HIV Prevention, the Chief Executive Officer, Lagos state AIDS Control Agency, (LSACA) Dr. Oluseyi Temowo (LSACA) has disclosed that no fewer than 9,579 persons, of the 616, 318 that attended the HIV Counseling and Testing, HCT, awareness programme from January to June, 2016, have tested positive to HIV. The United Nations had, in 1988, declared every December 1 as the World AIDS Day, to honor AIDS victims and focus on issues surrounding HIV/AIDS.
Temowo has said that in 2015, 599,560 people were counseled, tested and received results out of which 15,311 people were found to be positive. The LSACA chief said that 52,803 people living with the virus were currently on antiretroviral. Temowo has said that the agency had mobilized its HCT trucks to all the nooks and crannies of the state to conduct free HIV counseling and testing, saying that it would enable every Lagos resident to be aware of his or her health status and would allow individuals to know their status and take appropriate steps to prevent the transmission to other people. He said that this would also stop the progression to AIDS through lifestyle modification and health-seeking behavior. According to him, the move is geared toward achieving the eradication of the virus by 2030. He said that achieving an AIDS-free generation requires collective efforts. This is why we are calling on government at all levels, individuals and organizations, to join us in this quest to make Lagos State an HIV-Free Zone. “We implore residents to visit all government hospitals within their areas to access free HCT, while HCT trucks will move around to reach other areas for this purpose and also advise people to ensure these various means of prevention– condom use, harm reduction, voluntary medical male circumcision, prevention of mother-to-child transmission, counseling and testing.