Statements and Webcast
H.E. Mr. José Vieira Dias Van-Dunem, Minister for Health
9 June 2011
- Statement: English (Check against delivery)
JOSÉ VAN-DUNEM, Minister for Health of Angola, said his country was in sub-Saharan Africa, the region most affected by HIV/AIDS. It had a population of mostly young people and was experiencing an intense phase of economic and social reconstruction. Health infrastructure was still lacking and access to basic social services had not yet reached desired levels. While the AIDS epidemic varied in profile and behaviour depending on the province, Angola was considered a low-prevalence country. Noting that the Government had gradually expanded free access to prevention, treatment, care and support, he said more than 60,000 HIV-positive adults and children had enrolled in care and support programmes, half of whom had received free antiretroviral therapy.
While Angola had rapidly expanded HIV-specific services, “we quickly realized that this is not the best way to create sustainable services”, he explained, adding that the Government was committed to integrating HIV services into existing health services, enhancing systemic response and making HIV care an essential part of primary care. Continued investment in knowledge, access to health services and education, gender equality and youth leadership, among other things, would allow Angola to ensure that no man, woman or child was infected with HIV. “We want to make sure that every girl and boy has correct knowledge about HIV and AIDS”, he said, and that pregnant women had access to services to prevent mother-to-child transmission.