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Integrate religious teachings in the fight against HIV - experts

By Violet Nabatanzi, Apollo Mubiru

Added 24th July 2019 11:32 AM

Religiosity motivates people to take preventive measures can be used effectively to prevent HIV infections, according to Dr. Amone

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Participants pose for a group photo after the meeting. PHOTO: Nancy Nanyongo

Religiosity motivates people to take preventive measures can be used effectively to prevent HIV infections, according to Dr. Amone

 
Health experts have called for the integration of religious teachings and practices in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
 
The call was made during the 36th Federation of Islamic Medical Associations (FIMA) council meeting and the 4th International Muslim Leaders consultation on HIV/AIDS at Hotel Africana in Kampala.
 
The meeting was held under the theme: Integrating God’s guidance, religiosity to fast track the response to end HIV/AIDS, for God and my Country.  The meeting has drawn participants from Bangladesh, Turkey, Malawi, Nigeria, Malaysia, Pakistan, South Africa, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, USA, Yemen, Zimbabwe, Egypt, Kenya, Jordan, and Uganda.
 
The president of the Islamic Medical Association (IMAU) Prof.  Magid Kagimu emphasised that adherence to religious teachings and practices (religiosity) encourages people living with HIV/AIDS to take their medicines, increases access to medicines through faith-based health facilities and facilitate use by encouraging them to take their medicines religiously.
 
According to research by the Federation of Islamic Medical Association (FIMA), HIV/AIDS resource centre and the Islamic Medical Association of Uganda, lower levels of adherence to religious teaching and practices among Muslims and Christian youth aged 15-24 years were associated with higher HIV infection rates.
 
Dr. Jackson Amone, the commissioner for clinical services at the ministry of Health observed that HIV prevention, treatment, care, and support requires to integrate behavioural, biomedical and structural approaches in the interventions.
 
He said religiosity motivates people to take preventive measures can be used effectively to prevent HIV infections.
 
According to research by the Federation of Islamic Medical Association (FIMA), HIV/AIDS resource centre and the Islamic Medical Association of Uganda, lower levels of adherence to (religiosity) among Muslims and Christian youth aged 15-24 years were associated with higher HIV infection rates.
 
Uganda AIDs Commission director for policy and research, Zepher Karyabakabo said Uganda has registered significant achievements in the response in the recent past which are being accelerated by the Presidential initiative.

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