ALCS continues its collection campaign until 31 December
The Sidaction event, which aired on Saturday December 15th on 2M, raised 12,641,622 dirhams of pledges for the AIDS Association (ALCS). The national awareness and collection campaign continues until December 31st. Donors can make a transfer to the 2222 bank account by this date, use electronic payment directly on the ALCS website or send an SMS via SMS to 9494. In addition, citizens can deposit banknotes at the polls. have been installed in the airports of Casablanca, Rabat, Tangier, Marrakech and Agadir.
Money is needed to expand access to treatment for more patients, to develop prevention and screening programs. According to the statistics of the Ministry of Health, 20,000 people are living with HIV at the end of 2017, of which about 1,000 children and 39% women. Guardianship estimates show 990 new infections and 480 deaths. It should also be noted that 70% of women are infected by their spouses and 30% of people with HIV do not know it.
According to Ministry data, Morocco has a low HIV prevalence of no more than 0.1%. It should be noted that the prevalence of HIV is estimated at 1.3% among prostitutes, 4.5% on average among homosexuals and 7.1% among people who inject drugs (13.2% in Nador). It should be noted that 67% of new infections occur among this population, which is by far the most exposed to HIV. Three regions account for more than 65% of reported cases: Souss-Massa (24%), Marrakech-Safi (23%) and Casablanca-Settat (18%).
5.3 million condoms distributed
ALCS alone achieves almost 80% of the national targets for coverage of populations most vulnerable to HIV infection targeted by the national strategic plan to fight AIDS. In 2017, the ALCS was able to cover nearly 81,600 people including 41,139 sex workers, 30,574 homosexuals, 1,900 drug users and 8,148 sub-Saharan migrants. The association also organized, in 2017, about fifty training courses benefiting nearly 320 people including 200 peer educators, 40 volunteers, twenty therapeutic mediators and 60 stakeholders. With regard to prevention tools, the distribution of condoms has exploded in recent years. This rose from 548,000 in 2009 to nearly 3 million in 2013 and 5.3 million in 2017.
Nearly 62,000 people screened
In terms of screening, ALSC’s efforts have paid off. In 2017, it screened 61,668 people, of whom 622 were found to be HIV positive, or 48% of all people diagnosed with HIV in Morocco the same year. It should be noted that 60% of the positive tests were conducted by community counselors as part of the provision of non-medical community screening. In prison, the ALCS strengthened in 2017 its intervention at the level of prisons with the implementation of a program supported by UNODC at the level of the cities of Casablanca, Nador, Tangiers and Tetouan. In 2018, the program targets 7,500 inmates who will be counseled and screened for HIV, HCV and syphilis. In addition, 1,500 STI consultations are planned. Other actions include 7,500 detainees who will be screened for TB and 150 peer educators who will be trained.
Treatment with tritherapies: More than 4,000 beneficiaries
At the level of care for HIV patients, the ALSC reported that 4,425 people, including 161 children, received treatment with triple therapy, which corresponds to 38% of the total number of beneficiaries at the national level (11,635 ). It is important to mention the treatment of HIV-positive people, as soon as they are screened, which significantly reduces transmission of the virus within communities. Antiretroviral therapy prevents the virus from multiplying, blocks its development and decreases viral load until it becomes undetectable in body fluids (blood, genital secretions, breast milk). As a result, a person living with HIV who is taking his or her treatment correctly and who has an undetectable viral load no longer transmits the virus.