Business community supports HIV testing campaign

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Pretoria - The SA Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS (SABCOHA), Anglo American, Aspen Pharmacare, BMW, Discovery Health and Nike have declared their support for government's HIV Counselling and Testing (HCT) campaign.

Their recently met with Health Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi to explore how the business community can participate and support the initiative.

"The South African business sector fully endorses and supports government's HCT campaign, its targets and the keen focus on HIV prevention," said SABCOHA CEO, Brad Mears.

SABCOHA is the private sector's champion in the national efforts against HIV and AIDS. In preparation for the launch of the HCT campaign on 15 April 2010, as approved by Cabinet, SABCOHA will be conducting a dedicated strategic planning session on 29 March 2010.

The organisation will also be contributing towards the achievement of the testing and treatment targets by mobilising and maximising the use of established workplace wellness facilities equipped to provide HCT.

"We will use our structures to showcase leadership and mobilize participation in the national and provincial HCT launch events during and after April as well as working closely with government to share experiences," Mears said.

The organisation also commits to form partnership to extend government's efforts towards the strengthening of the health system into the private sector.

Mears stressed that SABCOHA and its members will consider how they can assist further with a special focus on the key areas outlined by Motsoaledi.

The areas include the provision of additional quantities of condoms and HIV testing kits and the secondment of skilled personnel who can work alongside the South African National AIDS Council and the Department of Health teams during the time of intense focus on HIV testing and prevention.