|U.S. ambassador inaugurates UNC-run HIV/AIDS care center in Kinshasa|
|June 29, 2006|
KINSHASA, Congo - Earlier this month U.S. Ambassador to the Congo Roger Meece helped inaugurate a new HIV/AIDS care unit in the Bomoi health care center, a community facility operated by the Salvation Army in the capital's N'Djili neighborhood.
Drs. Frieda Behets and Annelies Van Rie, professors in the Department of Epidemiology at the UNC School of Public Health, received funding from the U.S. government to set up the HIV/AIDS care unit. The center will have the primary task of providing health care to patients and their families suffering from the disease that has killed 23 million people worldwide, 90 percent of them in Africa.
"Today we celebrate a new program that provides a continuum of prevention, care and treatment for HIV/AIDS that is integrated into all services provided by the well-trained staff and personnel of Centre de Bomoi," Meece said in remarks at N'Djili.
In addition to providing treatment, the new unit will meet the psychosocial and nutritional needs of AIDS patients and their families, key elements in the HIV/AIDS programs the U.S. government is funding in the Congo at a price tag of $10 million a year.
Meece said the center "is also designed to provide quality health care services to all families, not just HIV-positive families. All mothers receive prenatal services to assure safe and successful births, all children receive immunization against the major childhood illnesses, and all sufferers of TB receive comprehensive services."
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