Friday, June 25, 2010

HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria are Still Threatening for Peoples’ Live

BY BUTH REAKSMEY KONGKEA

H.E. Dr. Mam Bunheng, Minister of Health, said that currently HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria are still threatening a lot of people’s lives.

“As you know, despite the progress in the past controlling HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis (TB), and Malaria, there are a lot of challenges to overcome, so that Millionaire Development Goals (MDG) target will be met by 2015 worldwide. They have been threatening a lot of challenges and people’s lives in Cambodia,” he said at a Workshop for Proposal Development GFATM Round 10 in Phnom Penh.

The Minister continued to say that globally, the three diseases are still major public health problems and account for nearly five millions deaths per year. He stated that particularly, WPRO Region still holds around one third of the global TB burden. Additionally, even though countries in the region have lower HIV/AIDS prevalence than that of sub-Sahara African countries the HIV/AIDS and TB are still the threatening a lot of patients lives.

“There is still limited access to diagnosis and care of HIV/AIDS and TB/HIV co-infected patients,” he said. “Although malaria incidence has been drastically on the decline, challenges still remain to be addressed which include drug resistant cases of malaria, malaria at cross borders and for migrants of mobile population,” he added.

With the support from various partners including donor agencies, impressive achievements have been made by Ministry of Health. These include: the reduction of HIV prevalence among adult population from 2 percent in 2008 to around 0.7 percent in 2009, the decline of prevalence of TB of all forms from 928/100,000 populations in 1990 to 665/100,000 populations in 2007.

The Minister said that despite the above achievements, Cambodia still faces a number of challenges so that the country could reach MDG goals. Challenges include: the still high prevalence and incidence of TB, the continuity of comprehensive care for HIV/AIDS patients, and the further efforts to reduce incidence of malaria, including drug resistant cases.

“Therefore, so as to further improve the prevention and care of HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria, and particularly to obtain the MDG targets more efforts will be needed in particular new interventions and innovation whereby more resources will be required in which external financial resources, especially from GFTM will be of critical importance,” he said.

To prevent and reduce the new TB affection, HIV/AID and Malaria, so far Cambodian government as well as Ministry of Health have been working hard in raising the TB awareness and proving DOT to all those who are now living with TB in Cambodia, he emphasized.

He called on the health officers to continue their work hard to find the TB patients or those who live with TB for treatment so that Cambodia will be able to achieve in reducing 100 percent of TB affection and mortality by Millionaire Development Goals (MDG) in 2015.

Dr. Mao Tan Eang, Director of CENAT, said that to reduce the rate and affection of the TB in Cambodia, with financial supports from World Health Organization (WHO), and other involved international organizations, his center has begun the DOT program since 1994.

Dr. Tan Eang said that from 1999 until 2009 his center has been enlarging DOT services and covering 100 percent in all health centers and referral hospitals across the country. He stated that due to the hard work, the number of the TB prevalence rate has been decreased.

He said that in 2009 the rate of the TB death is a total of 88 cases among the 100,000 people while there are 2,920 cases of which about 700 died in 2008. In 1990, the TB prevalence rate is 928 cases among 100,000 people in Cambodia. He added that to prevent and reduce 100 percent TB affection and mortality, the center as well as Ministry of Health will enlarge DOT services in every community, health centers and referral hospitals in Cambodia in the future.

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