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Drug Substitution Therapy Room Opened in Salihorsk

Drug substitution therapy room was opened today in the Narcological Dispensary in Salihorsk within the framework of the Grant “Ensure Universal Access of the Key Affected Populations in Belarus to HIV Prevention, Treatment and Care” extended by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) which is administered by the United Nations Development Programme in collaboration with the Belarusian Ministry of Health.

– This is the first oblast–level substitution therapy room, – said Aleksander Rimashevsky, Chairman of the Soligorsk Rayon Executive Committee. – Public health has been historically given great attention and, besides, we expect that the substitution therapy project will contribute to reduction of drug related crimes.

Antonius Broek, UNDP Resident Representative in Belarus, gave a high appraisal of the Ministry of Health’ and local authorities’ efforts and commitment to the projects implemented in Salihorsk by UNDP within the framework of the Global Fund’s grants. Mr. Broek visited Salihorsk for the first time in 2008 to attend the opening of the information and counseling room for young people supported by the GFATM’s Grant “Prevention and Treatment of HIV/AIDS in Belarus”. Today the issues discussed included focuses of joint efforts within the framework of HIV and TB prevention and treatment grants for 2010 including antiretroviral therapy, prevention and treatment of multi–resistant tuberculosis.

Salihorsk has initiated an innovative approach to adjustment of methadone dosage in an out–patient health care facility; until recently such experience in Belarushas been limited to hospitals only.

Drug substitution therapy has been administered in Belarusfor more than 2.5 years in patients suffering from drug addiction who had tried other methods of treatment but with no success. This method is currently administered in about 200 patients suffering from drug addiction.

For further information, please contact Press Service of the Global Fund’s Grants, tel.: +375 17 299–07–87, +375 29 164–23–56.

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