Dr. Susan Ama Amuasi, a lecturer at Central University, emphasizes the importance of protective sexual behaviors in reducing the incidents of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and overall Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs).
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, Dr. Amuasi highlights the need for practices like consistent and correct condom use, regular testing and treatment, and open communication about sexual health.
According to Dr. Amuasi, “a comprehensive approach to sexual health and adopting safe sexual practices are considered essential steps in reducing the prevalence of infections and fostering a healthier society.”
She emphasizes the significance of promoting these protective sexual behaviors, especially among the youth, through comprehensive sex education, public health campaigns, and healthcare services.
The theme for this year's World AIDS Day, “Let Communities Lead,” aligns with Dr. Amuasi's perspective, emphasizing communities' crucial role in spreading awareness about HIV and stopping its spread.
She urges a collective effort involving the government, healthcare providers, non-governmental organizations, communities, and individuals to address the alarming HIV statistics.
The World Health Organization (WHO) 2023 report reveals about 16,600 new HIV infections in Ghana this year, emphasizing the continuous global impact of HIV.
Dr. Amuasi stresses that addressing factors contributing to high sexual transmission rates, such as limited knowledge, inadequate sex education, and stigma, is essential. She points out that economic vulnerability and limited access to healthcare worsen HIV transmission issues.
“If the issues stated are addressed, the HIV and AIDS epidemic will end as a public health threat by 2030 as envisioned by UNAIDS,” Dr. Amuasi concludes, highlighting the importance of immediate and comprehensive action to reverse the current trend.