Nutrition guide for HIV/AIDS given local launch
November 5, 2003
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Almost a year after the Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (CFNI) launched a handbook entitled `Healthy Eating for Better Living’, an updated document was unveiled here as part of a three-day training programme on nutrition and HIV.
Despite the time since the regional launch of the book, which focuses on the diet and healthy lifestyles of HIV/AIDS patients, Guyana has not yet decided on how these patients will access the book.
Norma Howard, Public Health Nutritionist of the Food Policy Division, Ministry of Health, when questioned by the media was unable to say if the book was for sale since she said that aspect of the implementation was yet to be discussed with the CFNI.
“It will get to them [HIV/AIDS patients] but what I can say at this point is that we have not decided whether it will be sold or distributed. That is the decision we would have to discuss with CFNI because CFNI is the producer of the book, so we have to discuss that with CFNI.”
However, a representative from CFNI later informed the media that the books will be distributed free of charge.
As to how soon the book will reach HIV/AIDS patients, Howard said that all of these issues would be discussed on the last day of the workshop.
She said persons had been contacting them and asking how to access the book.
Howard added that the book had been revised and modified by CFNI since last year’s launch.
“There was a technical review of the book by CFNI and member-countries. We [Guyana] were involved in the review in terms of meeting with a sample of persons from HIV/AIDS NGOs and having them discuss the book. As well, there were some focus -group sessions in terms of what is available and how it should be done.
Those bits of information were used for the final review of the book.”
Howard said that they had made some modifications in terms of the language. In reference to the recipes, which are the most important aspect of the book, Howard said that even though some of the food was not available, recipes could be modified.
She said that the workshop would see the handbook being explained to the participants by resource persons, who will be responsible for discussing each chapter in the book.
The participants are representatives of HIV/AIDS non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other organisations that are involved in HIV/AIDS counselling and care.
On the last day of the workshop, group sessions will be held where all the representatives will develop a work programme or country plan.
The book informs readers about how to plan a healthy diet; keeping healthy and the special needs of HIV/AIDS patients; food safety and hygiene; coping with problems related to HIV/AIDS; and how to care for infants and children with HIV/AIDS, among other issues.