The National Director, HIV/AIDs Division, Federal Ministry of Health, Araoye Segilola says the government is committed to eradicate HIV/AIDs epidemics by 2030, to reach its zero infection target.
Segilola disclose this during a scientific roundtable series, in Abuja. Organised by the Centre For Integrated Health Program (CIHP) with the theme: “Reaching “zero”, Emerging dynamics of HIV epidemics in Nigeria”.
“Government is concern about this young of people between the ages of 15 to 24 years, which is over one percent, because those are the future of the country. We need to do everything humanly possible to eradicate HIV epidemic within that population of aged.
As a government we are working hard to reduce and remove bare to accessing to healthcare.
We pledge to put patients first in all of our programs Medicaid and the Health Insurance Exchanges. To do this, we are working with partners to make health care decisions that are best for them,” he said.
He noted that the government is working hard to find best ways to enable HIV patients have access to the use of technology and treatment to support patient centered care.
In the same vain, CEO of CIHP, Dr. Bolanle Oyeledun said, many people living with HIV in Nigeria are not unaware of their status. Nigeria continues to fall short of providing the recommended number of HIV testing and counselling sites.
He added that low levels of access to anti retroviral treatment remains the major issue for people living with HIV in the country, meaning that there are still many AIDS-related deaths in Nigeria, to poor medical treatment.
“This means giving them meaningful information about quality and costs to be active health care consumers. It also includes supporting innovative approaches to improving quality, accessibility, and affordability,” she said.
Reviewing the document, the Country Director, US-CDC in Nigeria, Dr. Mahesh Swaminathan said the new data differentiate HIV prevalence by state, indicating an epidemic that is having a greater impact in certain areas of the country.
According to him, “this news 90-90-90 targets is to help the country measure the impact of epidemics, the target ahead of 2020 deadline is to have 90% of all people living with HIV to know their status and for all those who know their status to be on treatment.
“The South-South zone of the country has the highest HIV prevalence, at 3.1% among adults aged 15–49 years. HIV prevalence is also high in the North Central zone (2.0%) and in the South East zone (1.9%). HIV prevalence is lower in the South West zone (1.1%), the North East zone (1.1%) and the North West zone (0.6%).” he said.
The data from the Nigeria National HIV/AIDS Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS) are based. The survey provides a clearer understanding of Nigeria’s HIV epidemic and shines a light on progress, gaps and its challenges.
At the national level, viral suppression among people living with HIV aged 15–49 years stands at 42.3% (45.3% among women and 34.5% among men). When people living with HIV are virally suppressed they remain healthy and transmission of the virus is prevented.
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 prevention of HIV.