Bangui- CAR (PANA) -- HIV prevalence rate in the Central African Republic (CAR) has dropped from 15% in 2002 to a current 10.
7%, according to Jean Willybiro Sako, co-ordinator of the National AIDS Committee, CNLS.
"We hope the drop represents a stop in the progression of the disease and a major reduction in the spread of the pandemic, thanks to the national response," Sako said at the opening of CNLS's third general assembly here.
Noting that results of a multiple indicator survey now underway were being awaited, he said: "Sensitisation through NGOs and general awareness were gaining much ground.
" He said more than 50,000 people had been screened for HIV, with some 3,000 of them now undergoing antiretroviral treatment.
But Sako insisted that "the change of behaviour" emphasised by the awareness campaigns was still "too slow," and called for reinforcement of the prevention methods through expanded voluntary screening and increased community participation.
Set up in March 2001 to co-ordinate national actions against HIV, the CNLS chaired by the Head of State, held its first general assembly in July that year, when the national HIV prevalence rate was about 15%, making CAR one of the 10 countries in the world most affected by the infection then.
The CNLS is expected to end its ongoing general assembly Wednesday with the adoption of a strategic framework against HIV over the next two years.