JIS News

Residents of Summerfield in Clarendon, yesterday (Feb.17) benefited from an outreach session organized by the Clarendon Health Department, where they were provided with information on how to guard against contracting sexually transmitted infections (STI), including HIV.
The session was as part of activities to mark ‘Safer Sex Week’ from February 12 to 17.
Shelton Maxwell, Targeted Interventions Officer at the health facility, told JIS News that the activity served to complement the department’s Targeted Community Intervention Programme (TCI), which is being undertaken as part of the Ministry of Health’s Behaviour Change Communication Programme, designed to promote healthy sexual habits and reduce risky behaviours.
As part of the session, the department conducted risk assessment, disseminated information on HIV/AIDS and distributed condoms. There was also a video presentation in collaboration with the Jamaica Information Service.
Mr. Maxwell said that in keeping with the theme for Safer Sex Week which was: ‘Know your HIV status, get tested,’ persons were encouraged to use the HIV/STI testing facility at the Chapelton Hospital on Mondays and Wednesdays. He noted that the Chapelton Hospital was one of the sites, which accommodated testing under the Health Ministry’s Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) programme.
“Testing is the most critical step in determining your status and helping you deal with the disease if you have it, as well as to prompt you to change risky sexual habits, and so we are encouraging persons not only in this community, but throughout all of Clarendon, to know their status,” he said.
Later in the day, a condom dispending machine was launched at Desreen Gordon’s Auto Supplies and Restaurant, while male and female condoms are being distributed in the community.

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