Professor John Anarfi has said the decline in new HIV infections in Africa was due to behavioral change and education.
Prof Anarfi said this during a symposium on the theme: “HIV Education Policy Development and implementation in higher educational institutions” in Accra on Monday.
The event, jointly organized by THE United Nations Education and Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), UNAID’s Inter-Agency Task Team (IATT) and the Association of African Universities (AAU), was to explore the concerns and practices relating to disease in tertiary educational settings.
Prof Anarfi, a University of Ghana lecturer, said HIV and AIDS infections affected the demand and supply in educational institutions as it impacted on their financial and material resources.
He said a survey conducted by the AAU revealed that there has been no attempt to integrate the impact of HIV and AIDS into the strategic plans of many tertiary institutions.
Prof Etienne Ehile, Secretary General of AAU, said issues to be discussed during the event amongst others, include HIV education, curriculum and teaching methods, access to products for the prevention, treatment and care in the school community.
He said the event would provide an opportunity to increase the profile of HIV and AIDS in educational communities.
Mr Donnan Tay, Director of Tertiary Education at Ministry of Education, said there were plans to strengthen links among learners, educators, individuals and the community to combat the spread of the infection.
He said government intended to train teachers as motivators and the youth as peer educators for early diagnosis and treatment of sexually transmitted infections and condom distribution.
He said the disease had also increased the cost of training academic staff due to high employee turnovers and the fact that very little benefits are given to people times of illness or death.
He said these had affected the quality of education within many institutions because the sick, depressed, unmotivated and often demoralized staff could not be expected to teach effectively.