HCT counselling increased with more then 1500 test over the past year. Although there is a high number of tests, the number of people testing HIV positive remained more or less stable.
We also had a problem with delivery of HCT test kits as the clinic ran out of stock on several occasions. We managed to substitute with some privately bought tests which prevented the service being destabilized. Since 1999, more then 50 000 tests have been performed by HAPG in the BelaBela community.
The graph represents testing for 11 years. In previous years we also performed tests for the Jubilee hospital due to problems with their lab. This is the reason why the earlier years are omitted from the graph.
HCT counselling and testing is done by HAPG at all the local health facilities in BelaBela by the HAPG counsellors. Adherence counselling is also provided by all the HAPG counsellors at all the facilities.
HCT testing is provided in all facilities but the bulk of HCT testing takes place in the township. Daily awareness and information campaigns in the community form an ongoing reminder for residents to be tested and followed up for HIV.
Efforts are also undertaken to have HIV negative testing people remain negative for the benefit of their own health.
As the number of tests performed is increasing, the number of males taking up HCT testing is also increasing. This was not an easy undertaking and started in 2008. Nevertheless, it took a long time before males became aware of the necessity of HCT testing. Referrals for MMC have also played a role in having more males taking up HCT testing.
Client initiated testing is strongly promoted by HAPG. This is a sign that people are becoming more aware of the need to take care and protect their own health. In 2012, the number of client initiated tests among women declined because of the intensive referral by the PHC for HCT testing in pregnant women. After one year, it is now known among the women that, when pregnant, they will be referred for HCT testing and many of them are already doing their HIV test before consultin the antenatal clinic.
PMTCT testing is seriously increasing, as almost all pregnant women are tested for HIV before delivering their babies. Over the past year 217 more pregnant women were tested, but the HIV positive results are far below last year's level with 13.8 % compared to 18.28 % last year.