Efforts made to fight HIV/AIDS said insufficient

Efforts made to fight HIV/AIDS said insufficient


ADDIS ABABA, Sep 15 (ENA)- President of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Dr. Astrid N. Heiberg, says that all efforts so far made in Africa to contain the spread of HIV/AIDS pandemic were generally insufficient.


In a press briefing at the end of her two-day working visit to the metropolis yesterday, the president said that fighting the pandemic will be the point of focus all over Africa for the coming ten years.  She also pointed out that the issue was the central theme raised at the meeting of Health Ministers held in Ougadougou, Burkina Fasso, which marked the beginning of her four-week working visit to Africa.


According to N. Heiberg, organized volunteers of the federation will be deployed throughout Africa to help bring about behavioral change among the society.


Speaking of the Ethiopian condition, she said: "The number of infected people here percentage wise is relatively less compared to many other African societies." This, the added, portrays the existence of increasing possibility of containing the pandemic.


During her stay here, she has met the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Deputy Secretary of the OAU.


She has also visited and was impressed with the activities of the Ethiopian Red Cross Society.  Especially the Blood Bank, Training Center and the highly automated and computerized warehouses for distributing pharmaceuticals were have earned her admiration "I've been to 17 countries before, but I have never seen anything like the Training Centers and the warehouse you have here", she said.


The International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies now embraces 176 countries globally and has 100 million member volunteers.


ERCS president Shimelis Adugna, Fancoise Le Goff, Regional Delegation Head of the Federation, and other officials were present at the press briefing.