UN AIDS records have shown that 10,000 children in Sierra Leone are living with HIV and only a little over 1,000 are on treatment, leaving a gap of
9,000 without treatment. This was revealed at the start of a two-day refresher training on how family based paediatric index int Cierra case HIV testing for community an and health and social workers with the e on support from UNICEF, through HAPPY Kids and Adolescents,
child friendly Organization. The two-day training which took an informal trend of interaction between facilitators and participants was held at the conference hall of Christian Health Association in Sierra Leone (CHASL) where scores
of community and social workers from various health facilities across Freetown and parts of the North, South and Eastern Districts converged to witness the third in a series of refresher training to further enhance their work for quality, effective and efficient service delivery with credible data that will put health professionals where the country is with regards the WHO, UN AIDS 95-95-95 target objective.
A whole list of topics have been lined up for the next two days for participants, but the main objective of the family based paediatric index case HIV testing for the participants is for them to recall the important role of family based index testing, as an HIV case finding strategy, in order to find the missing percentage of those living with the Virus and do
not know their status.
According to Executive Director, the HAPPY Kids and Adolescents, Mariama Marco-Conteh training will also help the 35 participants to her understand the steps for providing family based index testing services to the biological children and adolescents of People Living with f he HIV (PLHIV) in a safe and ethical manner perform all HIV tests in line with the national HIV algorithm, and to demonstrate an enhanced it or community understanding of client confidentiality.
National Programme Officer, from the 9 National Aids Control Programme (NACP) Victoria Kamara also one of the facilitators commended HAPPY Kids and Adolescents for conducting the third series of training for community and social
workers citing that it is important as a result of the new guidelines with , regards to family index testing from partners.
She added that there is a challenge in the sectors, but called on all the participants to exercise patience and continue their work despite the many constraints out in the with field, citing they are serving to save humanity, especially to identify the line missing index cases and to encourage them to get tested voluntarily and if they are positive, link them with a health facility to start treatment immediately, which is one of the the 95’s of WHO and UN AIDS.
The UNICEF representative assured HAPPY Kids and Adolescents of its continued support to get the missing 33% more people tested and put on treatment, and this is why UNICEF will provide 10,000 HIV testing kits to enhance the desired objective of family based paediatric index case testing in Communities