A review of national programme data on the HIV epidemic in Ghana: 2005-2010

Type Journal Article - Posgraduate Medical Journal of Ghana
Title A review of national programme data on the HIV epidemic in Ghana: 2005-2010
Volume 3
Issue 2
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2014
Page numbers 73-81
URL http://gcps.edu.gh/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/A-REVIEW-OF-NATIONAL-PROGRAMME-DATA-ON-THE-HIV-EPIDEMI​C.pdf
Introduction: Enormous national efforts have gone
into combating the HIV epidemic in Ghana. This study
reviewed data from the National AIDS/STI Control
Programme over the period 2005-2010, in terms of
time, place and person characteristics of the epidemic.
It focused on past and current efforts at combating the
epidemic and what future efforts are required.
Methods: It was a descriptive review of data from HIV
sentinel surveys (HSS) and annual reports of the
National AIDS/STI Control Programme (NACP) from
2005 to 2010. The review was conducted in 2011. The
analysis described reported HIV and AIDS cases in the
general population, median prevalence of HIV among
pregnant women (15-49years), and AIDS related
mortalities. Also, number of clients on ART, and those
lost to follow up was analyzed. These characteristics
were disaggregated by sex, age groupings, location and
by administrative regions.
Department of Community Health, University of Ghana Medical School, College of Health Sciences, Korle-Bu,
Accra, Ghana.
Results: The review demonstrated an increasing trend
in the annual new HIV+ cases. However, the median
HIV prevalence amongst pregnant women over the
period was declining. There were clear age and
regional or urban/rural differences in HIV prevalence
in the country. National coverage for ART was 26% in
2009 and 35.2% in 2010. Number of clients on ART
lost to follow up increased over the period, especially
from 2008 onwards; it was 4.9% in 2008 and 9.2% in
2009. Over the entire review period (2005-2010),
number of patients lost to follow up was over a
hundred fold.
Conclusion: Ghana has made good progress in
combating the HIV and AIDS epidemic, however there
are challenges. National coverage of ART was low,
and patients lost to follow up were high. The unmet
need for ART though comparable to that of other
African countries, poses major challenges to Ghana’s
quest to reverse the HIV epidemic. Policy measures to
increase ART coverage and limit loss-to-follow up are
still paramount.

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