UNAIDS Executive Director and United Nations Under Secretary Michel Sidibe last week commended Botswana for achieving universal access to HIV/AIDS treatment. Sedibe, who was officiating at the launch of the website for the National Aids Coordinating Agency, said that the website launch will give hope and assistance to those who are infected and affected by HIV-Aids.
“Botswana has succeeded in giving her people treatment. Mortality has been reduced by at least 50% and the mother to child transmission has virtually been eliminated,” he said.
The website launch was also accompanied by the launch of NACA’s second national strategic framework for HIV and AIDS.
It is also expected that the framework will facilitate greater success in HIV prevention.
For her part, the Minister for Presidential Affairs and Public Administration, Lesego Motsumi said that the new framework signals a new generation in public policy on HIV/AIDS; one that will take Botswana further towards collectively addressing the key challenges of the epidemic well into the future.
“Aligned to the NDP10 and the country’s Vision 2016, the second National strategic Plan for HIV/AIDS (NSFII) will serve as a roadmap for all stakeholders, whether national, regional or international,” she said.
She further explained that the framework defines the nation’s priority intervention areas and a call for partners in the national response to align their efforts to advance towards the attainment of the ultimate goal, zero new infections by 2016.
Commending NACA for launching the website, Motsumi said that, like all modern communication tools of this era, the website is expected to be a reliable vehicle for communicating the national response to both the local and international communities.
“In today’s world, websites are the face of organizations. We intend to use the site to brand, not only NACA but more importantly the national response as guided by NSFII,” she said.
NACA National Coordinator Batho Molomo also reiterated Botswana’s commitment to ensuring that prevention of new infections is attained.
He explained that the new framework will be implemented in four phases, prevention of new infections, system strengthening, strategic information management and scaling up treatment, care and support.
“The website will be used as a vehicle for sharing information with stakeholders,” he said.