Health Minister on World Aids Day: Ministry exerting maximum efforts to wipe out the disease

Damascus, SANA-Health Minister Dr. Nizar Wehbi Yazigi said Syria is one of the countries with low AIDS prevalence rates where infection cases since 1987 have not exceeded 829, including 327 non-Syrians patients.

The minister said in a statement during workshop organized by the Ministry of Health, in cooperation with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) marking the World Aids Day.

The ministry is pulling out all the stops to wipe out the disease and incorporate Aids patients into society, as well as lessen their suffering and provide them with free medicine, the minister affirmed.

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He added that the ministry will continue to provide free treatment for Aids patients despite terrorist attacks against its institutions and the economic embargo against Syria.

Dr. Iman Bahnasi, Head of Health for UNICEF Syria said the youth category is the main focus of the world program to wipe out Aids and they hold out hope that the battle against the disease can be won, warning that it might spiral out of control to become a key health problem unless countries take effective precautionary measures.

One of the major challenges facing our society lies in low health awareness, saw Dr. Zakariya al-Khouli, Director of the Health Ministry’s Direction and Guidance department , which he said necessitates intensified awareness-raising campaigns to ensure protection from contagious diseases.

WHO resident representative in Syria Elizabeth Hoff said the organization has issued guiding rules on Aids prevention and treatment. The rules feature steps to be taken by countries to decrease HIV infection cases.

“Today, Aids patients who live with HIV virus can enjoy a long life and health because the antiretroviral therapy is becoming less toxic and easier used,” WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean Ala Eddin al-Alwan said in a speech delivered on the occasion.

Manal Ismael

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