Sensitisation program on HIV & AIDS, drug related issues conducted at Jakhama

Kohima: Drug addicts need medication and support not lockup, says Dr Medom

BY | Saturday, 29 July, 2023

Nagaland Users Network (NUN) TI Jakhama organised an advocacy and sensitisation program on HIV & AIDS, drug related issues cum health camp with stakeholders and Healthcare Resource Groups (HRG) on Saturday at Panchayat Hall, Jakhama, Kohima district. The event was conducted in collaboration with OST Jakhama, LWS Kripa foundation, NUN SSK NHAK, Mobile ICTC, Mobile Medical Unit.

Medical Officer, OST, Jakhama, Dr Keneilhoulie Medom, highlighting on drug awareness, emphasized that drug addiction should be treated as a disease. Those suffering from drug abuse need proper medication and support, he said adding that merely nabbing them in a lockup and adhering violence will not cure addiction.

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He stressed on Opioid substitution therapy (OST), which was a process in which opioid-dependent injecting drug users are provided with long-acting opioid agonist medications for a long period. Dr Medom further clarified that there has been several misconceptions about the OST and spoke on its benefits for the addicts.

With the golden crescent located at the crossroads of Central, South, and West Asia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, extending into eastern Iran while golden triangle comprising of parts of Myanmar, Moreh and Manipur, Dr Medom emphasized that Nagaland is sandwiched between these two key areas where the raw materials pass from golden crescent point through the state and go towards the golden triangle while the end products take the same route. Due to the transit of drugs from the two points, southern belts require much awareness and consultation, which requires the joint effort of the community as a whole.

With the sunflower drugs craze in the society, Dr Medom also stressed that many youths were experimenting with the drug due to the odour and cheap price. He emphasized on the responsibilities of the society to extend their cooperation and support towards the management and treatment of the people who are suffering from drug addiction.

Program manager, NUN TI Jakhama, Nongonu Savi shared on the services, project objectives carried on by NUN, TI, Jakhama.

Manager cum counsellor, SSK, NHAK, Suveto Kezo highlighted that Sampoorna Suraksha Kendra (SSK) was a complete protection centre which was aimed on reaching out to those not self-identifying as HRSs (HIV) but still at risk and providing them with a cyclical need based and comprehensive package of support services that would help them stay healthy.

Kezo shared that SSK was people centric to provide holistic set of essential healthy services such as HIV testing, Hep B, Hep C STI etc.

Importance of testing was delivered by Zonal Supervisor, LWS, Mhosolu Demo.

Earlier the program was chaired by Counsellor, OST Jakhama Kevisenu Khatso, invocation by CRC, Jakhama Pastor John Zao and vote of thanks was pronounced by PE, NUN TI Jakhama, Vilakoto Mera.

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