Agency To Embark On Prevalence Estimate Of HIV In Akwa Ibom

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 Akwa Ibom State AIDS Indicator Survey AKAIS is to embark on the prevalence estimate of HIV among people in Akwa Ibom.

 Briefing newsmen yesterday in Uyo spokes person to AKAIS, Mr Bassey Nsa  says  the survey will  estimate the prevalence of HIV among children aged 0-14 years.

  He said that there seems to be no reliable statistical data as regards HIV prevalence rate as the figure keeps changing A 2012 household survey however put the state’s prevalence rate at 6.5%, which placed Akwa Ibom as the sixth highest among states in the country and higher than the national HIV prevalence of 3.4%.

The Survey according to him aimed at providing programme managers and policy makers a more detailed and specific understanding of the HIV epidemic in the state in order to guide scale-up of treatment and prevention services across all ages.

  Nsa, said the survey would also help to determine the coverage and HIV intervention service in the state; just as it would provide a general estimate of HIV in the state and also describe the demographic, socio-economic and behavioural risk factors associated with the HIV epidemic in the state.

The results of the study he said  will not only produce a more precise measure of HIV prevalence, but also will provide the proportion of PLWHA who have a CD4 count less than 500, a CD4 count less than 350, and the proportion of PLHIV on ART with a suppressed viral load.

“The data will provide an estimate of the current HIV program coverage and the unmet need for ART and PMTCT programs. In addition to providing information on state-level prevalence, incidence, and risk factors for HIV, the survey will also provide data regarding the burden of HIV and uptake of PMTCT services among pregnant women.

‘’Sponsored by USIAD , Nigeria Population Commission (NPC), Family Health International (FHI 360) Nigeria, FHI 360 HQ, the survey will  provide stakeholders with the information needed to effectively evaluate Prevention  the current programs as well as plan and implement future interventions’ ‘he stated.

He explained that the benefits of the survey would include HIV counselling and t testing; HIV testing for recent infection; child HIV testing; and blood samples collection from participants for testing.

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