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Alleged shortage of Antiretroviral drugs in Ghana

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The Non-State Actors for Health and Development (NSA-Ghana) has appealed to Government, to as a matter of urgency, intervene to ensure adequate availability of antiretroviral (ARV) medications for persons living with HIV and AIDS.

NSA-Ghana, said their checks around the country have shown that there is currently a shortage of Antiretrovirals.

A statement, signed by its Spokesperson Cecilia Senoo, said all the COVID-19 gains that Ghana had attained including being one of the few countries that had emerged as having dealt with the pandemic effectively, would be eroded if strategic efforts are not made to increase the supply of the Antiretroviral drugs in the country.

The statement explained that ARVs are not only life-saving medicines for persons living with HIV but are equally important in halting the spread of HIV, therefore adequate supply of these commodities cannot under any circumstances be compromised, NSA-Ghana explained that the country has been managing its HIV epidemic with ongoing support from two main donors the Global Fund for AIDS, TB, Malaria, and the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.

This support has enabled the country to continue to make strides in its effort to reaching epidemic control by 2030.

NSA-Ghana said the consequences of shortages in ARVS may lead to drug resistance building up in persons living with HIV, which could lead to potential deaths.

The statement added that government needs to ensure that the country can take control of its HIV epidemic by remaining a serious partner to key donors such that adequate supply of HIV commodities is assured at all times to save lives.

It also said the government must issue letters of credit to suppliers to ensure the immediate delivery of commodities that were to have been procured in December 2019.

Meanwhile, a WHO survey has shown that 73 countries are facing risks of running out of antiretroviral medicines due to COVID-19 related issues.

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