New Start counselling, testing site launched
Guyana Chronicle
May 5, 2004

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THE Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association (GRPA) in collaboration with Population Services International (PSI), the social marketing implementing partner of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), yesterday launched its New Start Voluntary Counselling and Testing Site at the GRPA Boardroom, Quamina Street, Georgetown.

The New Start franchise initiative is funded by USAID and implemented by PSI and executed through franchise sites such as GRPA.

This service will allow the general public to access quality and confidential HIV/AIDS counselling, testing and related information.

The New Start service is available Mondays to Thursdays from 08:00 hrs to 16:00 hrs and Fridays from 08:00 hrs to 15:00 hrs for a small fee of $200.

Chief Medical Officer, Ministry of Health, Dr. Rudolph Cummings yesterday said this is an expansion of the use of voluntary counselling and testing type for the purposes of further trying to address the needs of citizens in relation to HIV/AIDS.

He noted that GRPA has previously worked with the Ministry of Health in maintaining a site but this is new funding coming from the government of United States of America, as part of President George Bush's initiative that is being administered here by PSI.

"It will allow GRPA some new resources and opportunity to put in place a sustainable approach to counselling and it has a number of advertisements on the television which you will note are promoting the use of these voluntary counselling and testing sites," he said.

Cummings said that in response to the GRPA there are going to be independent sites at 315 Parika Village, East Bank Essequibo, Linden Care Foundation, Burnham Drive, Linden, Saint Francis Community Developers, East Line Dam, Rose Hall Town, Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association, 70 Quamina Street, South Cummingsburg and Lifeline Counselling Services, 354 Cummings Street, North Cummingsburg where a New Start sign will be visible.