NGO network offers $200 confidential HIV tests
May 5, 2004
The Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association (GRPA) is one of five centres to begin offering cheap and confidential HIV/AIDS tests.
Yesterday, the GRPA held a ceremony to mark the opening of its New Start Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) Centre on Quamina Street.
The network of centres is being spearheaded by Population Services International (PSI), which has been working around the country with organisations which are in the health sector. Tests cost $200 and come with pre and post counselling services.
Chief Medical Officer, Dr Rudolph Cummings noted at the ceremony that the GRPA has launched a behaviour surveillance study with PSI to expand the knowledge of young people about the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Dr Cummings also highlighted the fact that the ministry is presently considering the establishment of centres where families can be tested and receive counselling and treatment together.
Dr Kampta Prashad, Medical Director for GRPA noted that because of the GRPA's other services, people could approach the clinic without the fear of being stigmatised.
In addition to the centre opened yesterday, a centre has already been established in St. Francis, Port Mourant, Berbice and others will be set up in Georgetown at Lifeline Counselling and in Linden at the Linden Care Foundation.
Another centre will be established at Parika as a stand-alone unit, not attached to an NGO.