Tufton calls for collaboration in AIDS fight
The Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton is encouraging stronger partnerships in the continued fight against HIV/AIDS in Jamaica.
Today is being recognised as World AIDS Day.
Speaking this morning at a function organised by the Jamaica AIDS Support for Life, Dr Tufton said Jamaica has made strides in containing the spread of the disease.
It is estimated that more than 29,000 persons are currently living with HIV in Jamaica and about 19 per cent do not know they have the disease.
He says, however, that the prevalence rate remains at 1.6 per cent.
AIDS-related deaths have dropped by 64 per cent between 2004 and 2011.
However, Dr Tufton says there is much more work to be done in the HIV/AIDS fight.
He says a collaborative effort is needed to overcome these challenges.
Between January 1982 and December 2014, some 33,193 cases of HIV were reported to the Ministry of Health and just over 9,200 or 28 per cent of the patients are known to have passed on.
According to the World Health Organisation, at the end of 2015 there was about 36.7 million people living with HIV.