Medicins Sans Frontier (MSF) has lamented the shortage of clinicians in the country, saying this is undermining efforts to fight against HIV and Aids, especially in rural communities.
Speaking at Nguludi in Chiradzulu on the sidelines of activities to mark this year’s World Aids Day, MSF field coordinator for Chiradzulu, Claudio Miglietta, said the Ministry of Health and its partners were failing to make routine follow-ups on persons living with HIV and Aids because of lack of qualified health workers.
He said clinicians play a critical role in ensuring that persons living with HIV and Aids are adhering to anti-retroviral therapy (ART).
Miglietta explained: “We’ve made bigger strides in Aids fight. But we still need to improve the quality of healthcare and treatment and clinicians are very important for us to achieve that.”
However, Miglietta was quick to commend the Ministry of Health for employing a number of initiatives, including ‘task-shifting of health workers’ to address the problem.
“This has helped us reach out to and follow 35 000 persons living with HIV and Aids. At least 80 percent of these are stable patients and we’re registering no Aids-related deaths anymore,” he said.
Chiradzulu district Aids coordinating committee chairperson Christopher Nawata said the number of organisations supporting the Aids fight is shrinking, thereby threatening the future of the struggle against the pandemic.