The Ghana Aids Commission continues to express worry over the low usage of condoms by the general population, especially during festive periods.
The Director General of the Ghana AIDS Commission, Dr. Kyeremeh Atuahene tells GHOne news Nadima Umar Uthman that the perception that casual sex without a condom is better, continuous to lead a lot people especially the youth astray.
In the first half of 2022 alone, 23,495 people tested positive for HIV.
However, over one hundred thousand persons are living with HIV without having been tested or on any form of treatment.
The festive season is often a time for people to make merry and break away from ironclad routines.
But as people celebrate, sex cannot be removed from the equation.
The Ghana AIDS commission says more people are having casual sex than ever before.
Director General of the Ghana AIDS Commission, Dr. Kyeremeh Atuahene says eighty percent of all HIV infections are through risky sexual behaviors like casual sexual encounters such as hookups, booty calls, and one-night stands.
“Casual heterosexual sex contributes to over 70 percent of all new HIV infections, but people still continue to engage in casual sex without condoms. Sex is fun but whiles having fun, remain cautious.’’
Kwaku Ankomah is the pharmacist in charge of the lesson pharmacy. He says there has been a reduction in condom sales compared to last year.
‘’Sales are quite low compared to December last year. Every month we sell about fifty packs of condoms but this month, it is less than ten. I think we need to up the advocacy.’’
Previously, the commission would embark on mass condom distributions, testing and advocacy during festive seasons like Christmas in all regions across the country. However, none of these activities have taken place this year as the commission says it lacks resources.
Funding from donor partners has significantly reduced over the period, a situation which continues to affect advocacy campaigns the commission intends to embark on.
“We are calling on all Ghanaians to come to the aid of the AIDS commission financially as this should be a collaborative effort between all stakeholders.”
As the New Year approaches, Ghanaians are advised to remain cautious and adopt healthy sexual lifestyles if the country is to end the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030.