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Press Release: 24th March 2017
WORLD TUBERCULOSIS DAY
UNITE TO STOP TB
In Uganda, an estimated 60000 patients are living with TB. In 2016, 44000 patients were detected and 16000 remained undetected. Uganda is currently among the 22 high burdened countries with TB in the world (WHO, 2016).
On 24th March 2017, AIDS INFORMATION CENTRE-UGANDA (AIC) joined the rest of the world to commemorate World TB Day. "We note with concern that 50% of HIV related deaths are due to Tuberculosis. However AIC during the year 2015/16 through the TRACK TB PROJECT in partnership with MANAGEMENT of SCIENCES HEALTH (MSH) registered 5616 new TB patients and out of these, 5448 (97%) were enrolled on direct observed treatment and 4717 (84%) of their close contacts were traced".
The theme for World TB Day 2017 calls for Action! Uganda has the good policies, strategies, resources to reach, treat and cure everyone infected with only TB and those co-infected with both HIV and TB. The challenges still remain since HIV patients have low immunity making them prone to TB co-infection. There is also low sensitization of masses about the possibility of HIV-TB co-infection, its prevention and management and low medical intervention for TB patients hence low case detection to the communities.
We urge the:
- Government of Uganda to remain committed to supporting and conducting the necessary research and leveraging resources with other funding agencies and organizations to reach, treat and cure all people living with TB and HIV/AIDS.
- Health workers and other service providers to introduce same day for ART Clinic and TB screening for early identification and diagnosis.
- Government of Uganda to finance TB control and increase PHC grants to districts, recruit more human resources for Health especially laboratory personnel.
We are committed to continue providing psychosocial support, working in partnerships and leveraging resources to reach, treat and cure all people living with TB.
PRESS RELEASE 8TH MARCH 2017
BE BOLD FOR CHANGE: A CALL FOR PLANET 50-50
On 8th March 2017, AIDS INFORMATION CENTRE-UGANDA (AIC) joined the rest of the world to mark celebrations and mobilized stakeholders around the world to call for a Planet 50-50. The theme for this years INTERNATIONAL WOMENS’ DAY commemoration is “BE BOLD FOR CHANGE”, a Call for Planet 50-50. We are being called upon to take bold action to accelerate gender parity. The Government of Uganda has done excellent work in setting up policy frameworks to address Gender Based Violence against Women and Girls (VAWG) including but not limited to the National Gender Policy 2007, Domestic Violence Act 2010, The Prohibition of FGM Act 2010 and Employment Act 2006.
Establishment of gender structures of representation for women’s rights from local council to national level and initiation of Uganda Women Parliamentarian Forum. Establishment of Universal Education for all including the girl child. Non-state actors have also leveraged efforts to end VAWG including the informal customary systems to address VAWG. These are used to describe mechanisms of justice and conflict resolution that operate outside the boundaries of the formal state based legal system. Despite the above efforts, existing harmful traditional and cultural practices have continued to deprive women and girls’ rights including child marriages, early and forced/arranged marriages and female genital mutilation/cutting, denial of education rights for the girl child. Little attention has been given to community structures such as families.
The community is unaware of the existing policies. Key populations such as sex workers and women who use drugs have been denied right to Sexual Reproductive Health services. It is evident that 56% of Ugandan women aged 15-49 years have experienced physical violence at some point since the age of 15 years (UDHS, 2011). 28% of women aged 15-49 have experienced sexual violence. 25% of women between 15 and 49 years their first sexual intercourse was not on their will. 62% of GBV is by intimate partners and largely affects women between the ages of 15-49 (UDHS, 2011). GBV survivors always fail to get the perpetrators to justice. Many leadership positions in Ugandan societies are male dominated. Among leaders and decision makers there is still insufficient capacity and political will to engage in responding to VAWG.
Men are not sufficiently aware of what constitutes GBV and what the consequences are for the men too and women are not empowered to claim and enjoy their rights. It is thus a personal resoposibilty to ensure women are treated well and equally. Women and girls are critical to finding sustainable solutions to the challenges of poverty, inequality and the recovery of the communities hardest-hit by conflicts, disasters and displacements. Women and girls are at the frontline of the outbreaks of threatening new epidemics, such as HIV&AIDS, TB and Hepatitis B.
We Commit Ourselves to:
- 1. Extend our healthcare services including (HCT, PMTCT, Sexual Reproductive Health and WASH) to target all women and girls at all levels (local, national, regional and international.
- 2. Work with men and boys of all ages, religious and cultural leaders and the corporate community to end violence in all forms against women and girls.
- Demand for a standalone gender goal in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and for gender transformation and equality to be integrated into all of the SDGs.
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