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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Kenya aims to reduce new HIV adult infections by 75 pct in 2019 

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya targets to reduce new HIV infections among adults by 75 percent and cut mother-to-child transmission to 5 percent by next year, the National Aids Control Council (NACC) said in a report released on Friday.

The east African nation recorded 52,800 new HIV infections last year, of which 8,000 were of children below 14 years.

Some 1.49 million people are living with HIV in the country, a majority of them women while 713,500 are on anti-retroviral treatment and the nation recorded 28,200 deaths last year.

To achieve the drastic cut in HIV infections among adults and reduce mother-to-child transmission from 14 percent to 5 percent, Kenya has lined up a number of strategies, according to the NACC report dubbed Kenya Aids Response Progress 2018.

The east African nation has prioritized to further increase domestic funding to HIV programming to plug the gap created by the decline in donor cash.

Between 2014/15 and 2017/18, HIV programming expenditures increased from 59.37 billion shillings (582 million U.S. dollars) to 946 million dollars.

“Kenya targets to increase domestic financing for the HIV response to 50 percent,” says the report.

Voluntary male circumcision, one of the foremost methods Kenya is using to fight HIV, surpassed its target in 2017 by reaching out to 239,001. Some 1.5 million males have been circumcised since 2013 when the programme was started.

Angeline Yiamiton Siparo, NACC’s chairperson, said with results from the implementation of the Kenya AIDS Strategic Framework pointing towards great progress, Kenya is on track in fighting the disease.

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EARLIER REPORT:

Kenya’s HIV incidences fall as efforts to fight disease payoff

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s fight against HIV/Aids is paying off after the east African nation recorded a sharp decline in number of infections in the last eight years.

HIV incidence among adults aged 15-49 fell from 0.35 percent in 2010 to 0.19 percent in 2017 due to the scale up of various prevention and treatment programs, according to a new report released on Friday.

The Kenya HIV Estimates Report 2018 by the ministry of health said that in terms of absolute numbers, the new HIV infections among all ages declined from 77,200 in 2010 to 52,800 in 2017.

“This indicates a 32 percent decline in the number of new annual HIV infections at national level, in spite of population growth,” said the report.

Annual new HIV infections among adult aged 15 and above also declined from 63,700 in 2010 to 44,800 in 2017.

“Among children, new infections declined from 13,500 in 2010 to 8,000 in 2017, which shows 41 percent decline over the period. Among young people aged 15-24 years, new infections declined from 28,800 in 2010 to 17,700 in 2017, which shows 39 percent decrease over the period,” said the report.

In 2017, there were approximately 52,800 new infections across all ages; 44,800 among adults aged 15 and above years and 8,000 among children aged below 14 years.

“Of the estimated total new infections, Nairobi contributed 7,159; Homa Bay (4,558); Kisumu (4,012); Siaya (4,039); and Migori (2,814),” said the report.

The national HIV prevalence among males and females aged 15-24 years was estimated at 1.34 percent and 2.61 percent in 2017 respectively, while overall HIV prevalence was 1.98 percent, which means 184,718 young adults were reported to be living with HIV in 2017.

The east African nation has recorded a declining trend of annual Aids deaths since 2005. Approximately 28,200 people died of Aids-related causes in 2017 compared to 53,900 in 2010, a 48 percent decline in the number of Aids-related deaths at national level over the period.

“The decline is directly attributable to the wider access to anti-retroviral (ART) drugs-made available with the roll out of free ART in 2003- and the ability of the National AIDS/STI Control Programme to cover treatment needs for HIV and AIDS, co-infections and provide care services.

Children below 15 years Aids-related deaths were estimated at 4,300 in 2017 down from 10,200 in 2010,”  said the report. The adult ART coverage is estimated at 75 percent while the ART coverage for children was 82 percent in 2017.

“This report aims to provide an improved understanding of the HIV epidemic in Kenya, and offers important insights into the impact of various interventions,” said Sicily Kariuki, the health Cabinet Secretary.

Angeline Yiamiton Siparo, the chairperson, National AIDS Control Council said that although Kenya’ s progression in the Aids response is unambiguous, the gains need to be capitalized.

“Kenya must sustain its efforts and move forward in achieving national and international targets. Considering the varied nature of the epidemic across the counties, and endeavouring to implement a range of essential HIV programs on a population wide,” she said.

             

 

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