By Tonny Abet
In less than three months, Uganda is expected to join three other African countries where an injectable drug has been approved for HIV/Aids prevention. News of the significant development was revealed yesterday by the Uganda Aids Commission (UAC), hailing it as an effective, safe and more user-friendly disease prevention measure compared to existing options.
The long-lasting injectable cabotegravir (CAB-LA) has been confirmed to be effective and is already being con- sidered as key to national efforts to reduce the health burden of HIV/Aids, which claimed 17,000 lives in Uganda last year.
Speaking in an interview in Kampala on Monday, Dr Daniel Byamukama, head of the HIV prevention division at the Commission, said UAC plans to roll out the drug early next year.
“We have made orders using the Global Fund for [HIV/Aids, Malaria and Tuberculosis] for injectable pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). You take one injection every two months. If you are HIV negative you will not contract HIV,” Dr Byamukama said.
“We are targeting 10,000 people in the first year, and we are increasing by 10,000 in the subsequent years to be benefiting from this. But if the need is so high, I promise that we shall make it available,” he said without indicating what criteria will be used to pick the very first beneficiaries.
More details in today’s copy of Daily Monitor