HIV infection among youths escalates

HIV infection is prevalent among the youths
HIV infection is prevalent among the youths

The youth aged between 15-24 years have a high chance of contracting HIV virus. This is according to response progressive report of 2015 that was released by the National AIDs Control Council on HIV estimates and HIV county profiles.

According to the report, of the annual deaths reported-30,187(86%)-half of these occurred in nine of the 47 counties with the top being Homa Bay (2,759), Kisumu (2,518), Siaya (2,206) and Nairobi County at (2,177).

The estimates aim at giving an understanding of the HIV epidemic in Kenya today and progress made in the successful prevention and treatment of HIV especially through mother to child transmission.  According to the report, a great impact has been felt in the reduction of mother to child transmission by 49 per cent.

Different sources, surveys, and data of the estimation show the current situation of HIV in Kenya; Service providers are being trained in the Counties on how to deal with patients and fight the disease. The analysis shows there has been an increase of infections among the youths which is alarming and UNAIDS continues to provide support to the process. However, fifteen counties contribute 60 percent of the total national new HIV infections. Kenya has been urged to sustain its efforts and move forward in achieving national and international targets.

According to the Director of National Aids Control Council (NACC), Dr. Nduku Kilonzo, “Stigma still remains a key challenge to the HIV victims especially with the insufficient s resources.”

In the report approximately 423,000 deaths have been averted due to Anti-Retroviral Treatment scale up since 2014 in HIV progress indicators. The major problem remains with the youth in keeping the progress off track.

Dr. Kilonzo did emphasize that “We require leadership, political commitment, civil society participation, knowledge capital generation, financial resources and more supports from the county and national government to eradicate the HIV epidemic.”

There is an urgent need to scale up prevention programs in an effort to reduce HIV incidence.