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Nigeria Has Established 74 ARV Treatment Centers Nationwide, Health Minister Says

March 13, 2006

Seventy-four antiretroviral therapy treatment centers have been established across Nigeria to help provide antiretroviral drugs to HIV-positive people, Health Minister Eyitayo Lambo said Thursday in a statement, AFP/Yahoo! News reports (AFP/Yahoo! News, 3/9). Nigeria in December 2005 announced it would begin a program that aims to provide antiretroviral drugs at no cost to about 250,000 HIV-positive residents. Only about 40,000 of the 3.5 million HIV-positive people in the country currently receive subsidized antiretroviral treatment. The program will be funded by a $250 million grant from the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, as well as with money made available when the country's international debts were canceled. The U.S. government will provide most of the remaining money needed to implement the program (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 1/3). Treatment centers currently operate in the capital, Abuja, and in 35 of the country's 36 states. The last state is expected to have a treatment center by the middle of this year, Lambo said (AFP/Yahoo! News, 3/9).

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