News Release Archive

HEALTH--Nova Scotia to Renew Provincial AIDS Strategy

The Department of Health will bring together key stakeholders to
renew the province's AIDS strategy, Health Minister Jim Smith
announced today.

"Our strategy has been in place since 1993," said Dr. Smith. "It
is time, with our partners in government and the community, to
look at the strategy and see if we can improve on it."

AIDS, or acquired immune deficiency syndrome, is a disease caused
by HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus that attacks the immune
system. Today, Dec. 1, is World AIDS Day.

In Nova Scotia, 447 cases of HIV and 227 cases of AIDS were
reported between 1983 and 1996. In Canada, 2,500 to 3,000 new
cases of HIV infection are reported each year. The actual number
of cases is higher due to under reporting, reporting delays and
people not coming forward for testing.

"We are pleased to be part of the team coming together to renew
the province's AIDS strategy," said Dr. William Hart of the Nova
Scotia Advisory Commission on AIDS. "Much has been accomplished
in the past few years, and there is much that can be achieved by
working with partners to develop a co-ordinated and
community-based AIDS strategy for the turn of the century."

In 1997-98, the Department of Health is providing about $1.3
million in direct funds for AIDS treatment, prevention and
education. Input will be sought as strategy renewal develops.

"The best way to develop a renewed AIDS strategy is to include a
true community perspective," said Robert Allan, executive
director of the AIDS Coalition of Nova Scotia. "We are pleased to
help bring that perspective to the team working together to
improve the strategy for Nova Scotians."


Contact: Dr. William Hart
         Nova Scotia Advisory Commission on AIDS

         Robert Allan
         AIDS Coalition of Nova Scotia

         Lori MacLean
         Department of Health

gam                       Dec. 1, 1997                 12:00 p.m.