Health Ministry, traditional healers join hands

The Ministry of Health in collaboration with Lesotho Network of AIDS Services Organisations (LENASO), on Wednesday met with traditional healers in a bid to solve their differences and mend relations.

Disease Control Communications Officer, Mr Baroana Phenithi said that the traditional leaders have been complaining that the Ministry is taking over their work, referring to medical circumcision.

He added that they want traditional healers support when they hold public gatherings so as to easily reach out to communities.

Mr Phenithi said that they called the meeting during this time of the year as it is the time initiations are taking place.

He said: “We are convinced that out of 10 people who are going to initiation school; two are on Anti-retroviral Treatment (ART) hence the need to engage through rendering our services through the champions we have trained.”

He added that the champions are expected to coordinate services between health centres and initiation schools.

He said good relations will assist traditional leaders to remember to check people’s health records upon arrival at the initiation schools, those on medication should be urged to take treatment even when they are not home.

The Disease Control spokesperson also said they will be introducing self-test kits.

Mrs Makhoboso Samonyane, a traditional healer, said that their relations have been harmonised as the Ministry agreed to give them champions familiar with initiation system to work with.

Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision is reported to help reduce chances of getting infections by 60 percent. It also reduces chances of getting sexually transmitted diseases and helps prevent cervical cancer in women and testicular cancer in men.

Lena

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