Winning the war on HIV/Aids
Namibia has made tremendous progress in the battle against HIV/Aids.
10 January 2019 | Health
The results of the Namibia Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (NAMPHIA) show that 77% of all HIV-positive adults in Namibia have achieved viral load suppression - a widely used measure of effective HIV treatment in a population - surpassing the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/Aids (UNAIDS) target of 73% by 2020.
Compared with the UNAIDS 2015 estimates, Namibia has reduced its HIV incidence rate by over 40% in the past two years, the report published on Medical Express said.
“Namibia has made this tremendous progress by either reaching or exceeding the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets among women and, nationally, by attaining 86-96-91 among adults.
“Namibia accomplished this through the strategic expansion of HIV prevention and treatment services, with a focus on viral load suppression at the individual and community level, and the swift implementation of forward-leading HIV policies,” the report said.
According to the report, the Namibia Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (Namphia) results also suggested that women aged 15-24 have a far higher HIV incidence rate (0.99%) than same-aged young men (0.03%) in the country.
This highlights the continued need for expanded primary HIV prevention in young women, including through the PEPFAR-led DREAMS Partnership, and ensuring that all men between 25 and 35 are virally suppressed, such as through the new MenStar Coalition.
“These exciting new data demonstrate that a community-centred approach results in high community viral suppression, which decreases the rates of new HIV infections.
“Several African countries are now on track to reach HIV epidemic control by 2020, accelerated progress that was only possible because of partner country political leadership and their rapid adoption of policies focusing primary prevention and treatment resources for maximum impact,” said ambassador Deborah Birx, global AIDS coordinator and special representative for Global Health Diplomacy.