By Sola Ogundipe
The Lagos State AIDS Control Agency, LSACA, has commenced the training of executives of the Nigeria Automobile Technician Association (NATA) Lagos State Chapter on HIV prevention amid COVID-19 pandemic
This is in line with the global epidemic control of HIV/AIDS by 2020 through the UNAIDS 90-90-90 initiative which means: 90 percent of the people living with the virus should know their status. 90 percent of HIV positive individuals should be initiated on antiretroviral drugs, 90 percent of individuals on antiretroviral drugs should achieve viral suppression, and for total eradication in 2030.
Addressing the participants at the event, the CEO of LSACA, Dr. Monsurat Adeleke said the State Governor has approved and released funds for the sensitisation and awareness campaign amongst the NATA Lagos Chapter. She said the community was a critical sector of the State economy with a significant Adolescent Youth Population that is contributing to the Gross Domestic Product.
Adeleke added that, due to the nature of their work, this group of people had challenges in accessing healthcare because of their work hours, the location of their workplaces, poor health-seeking behavior, and social beliefs.
She said the government was committed to youth development and wellbeing hence the need for the programme.
he also explained that the essence of considering this group amid COVID-19 is because their work is essential to the mobility of the patients and the health workers seeking care and treatment.
The training, she maintained, is for the Local Government Executives of the NATA who will serve as HIV ambassadors at their respective Local Governments.