AIDS in Ethiopia

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AIDS in Ethiopia
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In addition to her years of work in healthcare consulting and leadership, Amna Osman has provided support for women and children in developing countries. From 2008 to 2013, Amna Osman served as a consultant with NASTAD, an HIV reduction program in Ethiopia, a nation with a high incidence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

More than 1 million people in Ethiopia are currently estimated to be living with HIV, though not all have progressed to its final stage, AIDS. This illness also affects hundreds of thousands of children whose parents die of the disease. In 2006, Ethiopia began a multi-sectoral response to the epidemic with the support of the United Nations.

These efforts have significantly reduced the impact of HIV in the region, beating the sub-Saharan African regional average for antiretroviral treatment coverage by almost 10 percent. More work remains to be done, however, as Ethiopia still struggles to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV. Only 34 percent of HIV-positive births received prophylaxis as of 2010. Awareness, however, has reached an all-time high, with more than 95% of men and women aware of the disease.

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What Are HIV and AIDS?

 

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HIV and AIDS
Image: WebMD.com

Amna Osman has years of experience in healthcare leadership and leadership coaching. Much of the work Amna Osman has done has focused on HIV and AIDS, helping spread information regarding this syndrome and reducing its incidence among women and girls.

AIDS begins with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which attacks the host’s immune system through its T cells. By reducing the number of active T cells in the body, HIV encourages the development of infections or infection-related cancers in its host. HIV eventually damages the immune system enough that it can no longer deal with infections or mutations. Severe HIV infection leads to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

Fortunately, HIV can be treated through antiretroviral therapy (ART), which reduces the speed with which HIV destroys the immune system. Should the disease be caught early and treated with proper daily medication, those with HIV can live much longer, healthier lives. ART also reduces the rate of transmission to others, which diminishes the stigma once associated with this illness.

Female Genital Mutilations and Why They are Still Being Performed

WHO

WHO
Image: who.int

Amna Osman has more than 15 years of experience as a public health administration executive. A staunch advocate of women, Amna Osman is a leader of women-focused initiatives dealing with female genital mutilation.

Female genital mutilation (FGM) refers to surgical procedures that are intended to remove, change, or injure a female’s sex organs for non-medical purposes. These procedures are common in Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. The World Health Organization estimates that over 200 million women are currently living with the consequences of FGM.

Why is it being done? There are many reasons, but in many cultural traditions, FGM is considered a rite of passage as a girl is being prepared to transition to womanhood. Some traditions continue to uphold it because it is believed that it will decrease the possibility of a woman engaging in illicit affairs, as it will decrease libido.

Female genital mutilation is a reflection of a deep-seated gender inequality in the areas where it is practiced and is considered a violation of human rights. However, recent studies have shown that the number of girls who have to endure this cutting is dwindling. Through an initiative of the UN, which has been active in promoting health and human rights in many African regions, around 8,000 African communities have agreed to abandon the practice.

Three Benefits of Regular Meditation

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Meditation
Image: WebMD.com

Experienced public health executive Amna Osman has played important roles in community health and AIDS prevention in both the United States and Ethiopia. Outside of her demanding professional work, Amna Osman enjoys meditation as a calming, beneficial practice.

Everyone knows that meditation can be relaxing, but many people are unaware of the far-reaching benefits of practicing meditation regularly. Meditation imparts three important health benefits.

1. Meditation relieves stress. Stress is an exacerbating factor in many maladies. Everything from heart disease to psoriasis worsens with stress, making it especially important for people with any illness to manage their stress levels.

2. Meditation can have positive impacts on depression and anxiety. Comprehensive studies conducted in 2012 and 2014 found that people who engage in meditation reduce symptoms associated with anxiety or depression by a moderate amount. People who live with chronic insomnia can also improve their sleep through a specific type of meditation: mindfulness-based therapy for insomnia.

3. Since mediation centers on reining in “monkey mind” and focusing on the true nature of mind, it can improve concentration and attention in just a couple of weeks. Adults who meditate even score higher on standardized tests compared to their non-meditating peers.