HIV and TB tests urged for everyone

2016-12-07 06:02
Premier Sylvia Lucas (left) and provincial MECs commemorated World AIDS Day under the theme “It is in our hands to stop HIV and TB” by conducting a community outreach to about 100 families living with and affected by HIV/AIDS in the John Taolo Gaetsewe District. The 100 families that were visited have been adopted by government in order to do follow ups . Photo: Lecrecia Prins

Premier Sylvia Lucas (left) and provincial MECs commemorated World AIDS Day under the theme “It is in our hands to stop HIV and TB” by conducting a community outreach to about 100 families living with and affected by HIV/AIDS in the John Taolo Gaetsewe District. The 100 families that were visited have been adopted by government in order to do follow ups . Photo: Lecrecia Prins

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The John Taolo Gaetsewe (JTG) District has been identified as one of the poorest districts in the province and, according to the national government, needs special attention.

Sylvia Lucas, premier of the Northern Cape, said during her visit to the region on World AIDS Day on 1 December, that from now on JTG will be a priority to the government.

Lucas, together with the provincial MECs, visited areas in and around Kuruman and Kathu.

This formed part of an integrated approach between government, civil society, non-government organisations and religious formations to assess whether people take up the responsibility to regularly test for HIV or TB, know where they can find a testing site, clinic or health facility and whether the services at these government centres are ade-quate.

“During our visits to different homes, I noticed that it was not only HIV/AIDS and TB that were a problem, but also alcohol abuse and Fatal Alcohol Syndrome (Fas).

“Our first stop was at a caregiver’s house. Her husband assaulted her a few weeks ago with a hammer. He threatened her and wanted to burn down her house with the children in it.

“She has the attitude of a survivor, not a victim and her children are very protective over her. Other issues in the area are teenage pregnancy. In JTG it is the highest. Poverty is also a disease in the region,” she said.

On the day testing sites were available and information brochures and condoms were distributed and community members encouraged to test in order to know their status.

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