The newly constructed health centers will serve more than 125,000 patients
Sidama, SNNPR, Ethiopia, March 10, 2015 – In a ceremony held yesterday, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) officially handed over the first of five new health centers to the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples Regional Health Bureau. Located in the Sidama Zone (Jaradado), Gurage Zone (Wacho), Hadiya Zone (Mehal Jarso and Sidiya), and Silte Zone (Udasa), these facilities will serve more than 125,000 patients, including people at risk for, living with, or affected by HIV.
Funded by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), USAID constructed these facilities through its Ethiopia Health Infrastructure Program. The Program helps Ethiopia control the HIV epidemic by building and reconstructing facilities in the major regions where pregnant women can give birth and people living with HIV can receive antiretroviral treatment in clean and safe wards.
Speaking at the opening of the Jaradado center today, USAID Ethiopia Mission Director Dennis Weller said, “This transfer reflects our commitment to promote Ethiopian ownership of the response to the HIV epidemic, internationally recognized for its success in saving lives and preventing new infections.”
Through the Program, USAID also built 10 new warehouses to store and distribute medicine and other health commodities, renovated five existing health care centers, and will construct the new national blood bank in Addis Ababa.
As one of the largest recipients of PEPFAR resources, Ethiopia benefits from the multi-sector HIV programs administered by USAID, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Defense, Peace Corps, and the State Department’s Population, Refugees, and Migration Bureau. Through PEPFAR, the U.S. Government enabled Ethiopia to decrease the number of new infections and AIDS-related deaths by at least 50 percent since 2005.