Copperbelt Has The Highest HIV Prevalence In Zambia – Officials

KITWE District Aids Task Force chairperson Chikafuna Banda says 1,000 people test positive for HIV in the area every month.
Dr Banda said yesterday that 8,000 people undergo HIV testing in Kitwe every month of which 1,000 test positive.
He said there is need to intensify sensitisation campaigns to stop the spread of HIV and AIDS.
Dr Banda was speaking during a preparatory stakeholders meeting for the 2015 national voluntary counselling and testing (VCT) day to be held under the theme: “Universal access to annual HIV counselling and testing.”
“We have about 8,000 people who are tested in Kitwe for HIV every month, and out of this number, 1,000 test positive. These are true statistics. There is something that we are not doing,” Dr Banda said.
He said the latest statistics call for more funding towards the fight against HIV and AIDS.
Dr Banda said counselling and testing should also receive special attention so that people who test positive are counselled on how to look after themselves and to avoid infecting others.
Dr Banda said concerted efforts are needed for Kitwe to have zero new HIV infections.
“Kitwe is positive that the HIV prevalence rate will be lowered further towards zero new infections with commitment and focus,” Dr Banda said.
And Copperbelt AIDS co-ordination advisor Violet Mongeza said the region has the highest HIV prevalence rate in the country at 18 percent.
“We cannot run away from this fact that there is a lot of unprotected sex. Women are sleeping with fellow women, men the same. And in prisons, we can’t ignore that there is sex among the [male] inmates,” she said.
Mrs Mongeza said stakeholders’ participation to reduce the levels of infection is needed.

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