By Roselyn Gayaglo
Nearly three-quarters of men between the ages 15 and 49 who are sexually active have never tested for HIV, leaving their partners and the larger population at risk. This was revealed at a meeting to disseminate the 2022 Ghana Demographic Health Survey.
The survey also revealed that, unlike men, 54 percent of women aged 15 to 49 have never been tested for HIV.
Director General of the Ghana AIDS Commission, Dr. Kyeremeh Atuahene said the figures show that a lot more people are engaged in casual sex and keeping multiple sex partners, a situation which he said is worrying.
The survey, which focused on various aspects including the prevalence of HIV and AIDS-related behaviours, STDs, health insurance, and health coverage, showed that young people are an at-risk group for HIV and remain a target group in HIV programming.
Testing must therefore be prioritised as it helps to diagnose and link people living with HIV to care and access antiretroviral therapy.
Director General of the Ghana AIDS Commission, Dr. Kyeremeh Atuahene, said the funding challenge currently facing the commission is taking a toll on the campaign against HIV in the country. This, according to him, is evident in the data provided.
UNAIDS Country Director, Hector Sucilla Perez, said the data will inform key policy decisions needed in the campaign to end AIDS by 2030.
Acting Director of Demography at the Ghana Statistical Service, Godwin Odei Gyebi, called for more efforts to be channeled into addressing stigmatisation, saying it is alarming for sixty-point-eight percent of women and fifty-five-point-five percent of men to think that HIV-positive children should not attend same school with HIV-negative kids.