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UN office launches regional health programme

MUKOBEKO MAXIMUM

LINDA NYONDO, Lusaka
THE United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has launched a joint regional programme aimed at promoting human rights and access to healthcare services in Zambia.
UNODC programme oversight associate for HIV in prisons, Andreas Zeidler, said Zambia remains one of the epicentres of the global HIV and tuberculosis epidemics.
“Though Southern African Development Community (SADC) constitutes much less than five per cent of the global population, it is home to about 20 percent of the people living with HIV in the world,” Mr Zeidler said.
He said prison populations continue to have a higher prevalence rate than the general population.
Mr Zeidler said reducing transmission and improving treatment, care and support in prisons is an integral part of reducing the spread of infection in the broader society.
He said the programme is designed to improve the situation at both policy and service delivery levels to contribute to more effective and sustainable improvement of health.
The programme has also been launched in Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
Mr Zeidler said the regional programme will provide technical support for data collection and monitoring, advocacy, policy development, capacity building, co-ordination, healthcare service delivery, rehabilitation and reintegration of ex-prisoners.


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