AT LEAST 14% of Zimbabwean adults are HIV positive, with women being the worst affected, a 2016 household-based national survey by the Zimbabwe Population Based HIV Impact Assessment (Zimphia), has revealed.
BY NQOBANI NDLOVU
The survey, conducted between October 2015 and August 2016, however, noted a decrease in HIV prevalence countrywide.
“Fourteen percent of Zimbabwean adults are HIV positive. HIV prevalence is higher among women (17%) than men (11%). HIV prevalence has decreased since 2005-06 and 2010-11,” the report read.
The survey which is the first to be conducted in the country to measure national HIV incidence and viral load suppression (VLS), was also meant to measure the status of Zimbabwe’s national HIV response.
It also noted that the country was on course in meeting the United Nations’ 90-90-90 target to reach out and provide medication to at least 90% of people with HIV in the next three years.
The UNAids 90-90-90 target calls on countries to ensure that by 2020, 90% of all people living with HIV will know their status, 90% of all people with diagnosed HIV infection receive sustained antiretroviral therapy and 90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy’s viral load would be suppressed.
The country continues to register a marginal decline of new HIV infections through its multi-sector response, such as circumcision, to the epidemic co-ordinated by the National Aids Council.
The government has also launched other HIV research priorities to spearhead rapid responses to the epidemic.