Malawi body grants US$40m to gov’t ministry to fight HIV/Aids

malawi-national-aids-commissionLilongwe Malawi The Malawi National Aids Commission (NAC), a coordinating body for all HIV/Aids activities in the country, on Tuesday granted US$40 million from Global Fund to the health ministry to help it scale up its HIV prevention intervention.

The grant included funds for the procurement of health products like antiretroviral (ARV) drugs through the UN Children’s Educational Fund (UNICEF), biomedical HIV/Aids interventions such as salary top-ups for health workers, scaling up of HIV testing and counselling, provision of antireviral therapy (ART), Prevention of Mother to Child (PMTC) activities and health systems strengthening.

In addition, the body provided over 30 utility vehicles to be used in hard-to-reach areas in the national response to the pandemic.

NAC chair, the Reverend Bishop Bernard Malango, said the body would continue with its efforts to mobilise and provide technical, material and financial support in the fight against the scourge.

“Although the country continues to register success in programme delivery, there are still many challenges in scaling up the disease, especially in rural areas,” he said.

The grant would, therefore, provide an opportunity to scale up the biomedical HIV and Aids interventions in the country, he added.

Receiving the grant, Health Minister Moses Chirambo observed that the funds would be useful as Malawi forged ahead with the task of trying to increase coverage of HIV interventions.

Malawi has one million people living with HIV/Aids out of a population of 13.1 million, and 250,000 are on ART.