Posted: Saturday 23rd February 2013 at 19:06 pm

Malawi gets 1,000 new HIV infections a week: official

e2d1i gets 1000 new hiv infections a week official Malawi gets 1,000 new HIV infections a week: official

HIV positive Martha Makaramba, 35, rests outside Makaramba’s hut in a small village close to Mulanje town, Malawi. By Gianluigi Guercia (AFP/File)






BLANTYRE, Malawi (AFP) – AIDS-ravaged Malawi, where over a tenth of the population is HIV positive, records on average 1,000 new cases weekly, a top government official said Saturday.

“It’s a great concern to us that despite efforts by government to prevent HIV and AIDS, the country continues to register about 1,000 new cases of HIV every week,” Edith Mkawa, a senior health ministry secretary in charge of nutrition, HIV and AIDS, told reporters.

“The number is very high. It is frustrating the fight against HIV pandemic,” she said.

Mkawa said Malawi, where 11.8 percent of the 14 million citizens are HIV positive, “needs urgent action to attain zero new HIV infections.”

People “are not changing their behaviours. These behaviours are fuelling the spread of HIV at an alarming rate.”

The southern African nation has 350,000 people receiving free anti-retroviral drugs, up from 5,000 in 2004.


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