'Nigeria, 4th Country With Highest HIV/AIDS Patients'

Health Minister launches Buhari’s re-election initiative

President Muhammad Buhari presenting the survey stated that although HIV prevalence has reduced to 1.4 per cent, Nigeria can not still celebrate because now about a million of Nigerians with the virus is now not on treatment.

The recent drop in Nigeria's HIV epidemic with Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS) revealing a significant progress has excited partners, particularly the United States of America government.

"As part of my contribution to the campaign, I am pleased to inform you that recently, I launched the Free to Shine Campaign here at Abuja before the presence of relevant stakeholders including representatives of MDAs, wives of Governors, members of the Diplomatic Corp as well as people living with HIV/AIDS". It also accounts for the second highest HIV and Aids burden in the world after South Africa.

The survey presented for each geopolitical zone in the country for prevalence among persons age 15-64 years reads: North Central 2.1 per cent; North East 1.1 per cent; North West 0.6 per cent; South East 1.9 per cent; South-South 3.1 per cent, and South West 1.2 per cent.

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday unveiled the Nigeria HIV/AIDS Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS) report, saying the end of the disease was in sight in the country.

"On behalf of the government and people of Nigeria, we'd like to express our profound gratitude to you and your organisation for the great cooperation extended to us to tackle this major health challenge", Onyeama said.

"It is important that all people living with HIV get treatment and achieve viral suppression".

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"Today is a critical turning point in Nigeria for an HIV epidemic that has killed many of our countrymen and women".

The improved understanding of the country's HIV epidemic will allow for more efficient investments in the response to HIV and more effective planning for the provision of HIV prevention, care and treatment services, including a focus on key populations, such as female sex workers.

"An estimated 1.9 million Nigerians are now living with HIV with about one million persons on treatment".

She thanked development partners, whose support in the HIV response has been invaluable, and charged government at all levels to increase funding for HIV response using Nigeria's own domestic resources.

"However, it is time for us to leverage on the result and ensure that no baby is born with HIV in Nigeria", he added.

On the entourage of Dr. Sidibe were the Country Director of UNAIDS, Dr. Erasmus Morah, Director General, National Agency for the Control of HIV/AIDS (NACA), Dr. Sani Aliyu and other officials. Fieldwork was conducted between July and December 2018.

Africanews provides content from APO Group as a service to its readers, but does not edit the articles it publishes.

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