More World Bank $$$ for Jamaica AIDS fight

WASHINGTON DC, USA, July 27, 2007 – Following the successful implementation of a World Bank-funded HIV/AIDS reduction programme in Jamaica, the World Bank said it will be investing more money in Jamaica for a second HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control programme.

“HIV/AIDS remains a serious threat to the Caribbean region said Caroline Anstey, Country Director for the Caribbean said Thursday.

“With a follow-on project we will continue supporting the government’s efforts to control HIV in Jamaica and provide vital services to people living with HIV/AIDS.”

The main objective of the current project is to support the Government of Jamaica’s efforts to reverse the spread of HIV and mitigate the socio-economic impact of AIDS.  To date, approximately US$9 million has been disbursed with the remaining US$1.6 million expected to be spent according to the project’s implementation schedule.  The current project will close in May 2008.

“All project activities and disbursements are on schedule based on the timeline agreed upon between the Government of Jamaica and the World Bank,” said Dr Kevin Harvey, Senior Medical Officer for the National HIV/STI programme in the Jamaican Ministry of Health.  “With the new project under negotiation, we will be able to have more resources and increase our capacity to deal with the HIV/AIDS challenge.”

The current project seeks to reduce HIV transmission, especially by targeting high-risk groups and reducing stigma; improve treatment, care and support for those infected with the virus; and strengthen the national capacity to respond to the epidemic.