By Christian Ogbonna
The Excellence Community Education Welfare Scheme (ECEWS), a non-governmental organisation, has inaugurated a digital Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV) situation room in Ebonyi as part of its support toward curbing the disease in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the situation room was set up in collaboration with the Global Fund National Aligned HIV/AIDS Initiative Project and Fhi360.
In a speech at the event in Abakiliki on Tuesday, the Chief Executive Officer of ECEWS, Mr Andy Eyo, said that the project would help to create an easy channel for data and information gathering towards tackling HIV pandemic.
Eyo, represented by Dr Okezie Onyedinachi, Head of Clinical Service of the ECEWS, said the scheme was committed to promoting access to quality healthcare, education and economic strengthening opportunities for all Nigerians.
He expressed gratitude to the government of Ebonyi for creating an enabling environment for the project in the state.
Dr Abimbola Oduola, Technical Advisor II, Strategic Information and Monitoring and Evaluation, Fhi360 Regional Office, also thanked the Ebonyi government for accepting the project in order to curb the HIV disease.
Oduola, represented by Chris Amalu, Senior Technical Officer, Total Quality Leadership and Accountability, said the situation room would help programme staff meeting with local leaders and stakeholders frequently.
“This will help the staff to always visualise and examine granular site level data, identify gaps, brainstorm on solutions, identify areas of greatest need or collaboration for domestic resourcing.
“It will also adopt adaptive management decisions to improve programme results and foster an environment of mutual accountability.
“Following situation room meetings, key decisions are communicated to the appropriate operational units and frontline workers in a timely manner,” Oduola.
He further said that the project is in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, including good health and wellbeing, reduced inequality and partnerships for the goals.
The Programme and Technical Lead, ECEWS, Global Fund National Aligned, Dr Onyekachi Osabiku, said the situation room was connected to some health facilities across communities in Ebonyi.
Osabiku said that the facility was to strengthen and improve partnership with Ebonyi Ministry of Health towards participation on data-driven analysis.
He said that HIV prevalence in the state currently stands at 0.8 per cent.
“Of 15,913 persons expected to be on treatment, 14,155 are being treated in the state.
“We have above 95 per cent on treatment.
“We are on course on ending the HIV scourge in Ebonyi,” Osabiku further said.
Also, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Moses Ekuma, pledged to support the facility to achieve it’s aptimal goals for the people.
“Gov. Francis Nwifuru has made the health sector one of his top priorities in the development of the state.
“I urge the staff in the ministry to make good use of the facility and I believe the project will make significant impact in the fight against HIV, especially in the rural communities.
“Data is very necessary for planning and implementation.
“The situation room in the state is a welcome development,” Ekuma said. (NAN)(www.nanews.ng)
Edited by Sam Oditah