UNICEF To Tackle Prevalence Of HIV Among Adolescents In Northern Nigeria

By Amos Tauna

Kaduna (Nigeria)–United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, has planned to tackle high HIV prevalence among adolescents in seven local government areas of Kaduna State, northern Nigeria.

Speaking at a Forum with Nedia Executives in Zaria,  Kaduna State, the officer in-charge of UNICEF Field Office, Kaduna, Dr Idris Baba, said HIV in adolescents remained a big concern, stressing that steps would be taken to arrest the situation in the affected areas.

He explained that the support being offered by UNICEF was on HIV prevention, treatment and care in the seven local areas.

According to him, only seven percent of the adolescents surveyed at the beginning of the intervention programme in March were tested and have received their HIV result.

He disclosed that UNICEF had budgeted about N200 million to run the Adolescent and Young Persons, AYP, programme in Chikun, Igabi, Lere, Kagarko, Birnin Gwari, Jaba and Jema’a local government areas.

He noted with concern that in spite of the decrease in new HIV infections in the areas due to improved access to information, the rate of death among infected adolescents remained high.

The official stressed that the main objective was to raise AYP access to HIV testing from 20 to 40 per cent by the end of the intervention programme in May 2018, and increase condom usage among adolescents from 30 to 50 percent in the seven local areas.

He said that the programme was also aimed at raising the use of anti retro viral therapy from one to 21 per cent among HIV positive persons and increase the number of schools providing Family Life Health Education from the present 25 per cent to 45 per cent.

Baba disclosed that UNICEF had trained no fewer than 1, 300 persons to facilitate the success of the programme in all the local government areas.

According to him, the programme has helped to achieve 52 per cent awareness on HIV due to improved access to information among adolescents in the seven local areas, while the number of those who had tested had gone up to 46.6 per cent.

Posted by on 12/12/2017. Filed under Health, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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