HIV/Aids In Nigeria: Over 3,000 Babies Tested Positive

*Four-year Test sample Indicate Rise


THE National AIDS and STIs Control Programme says there is call for concern over the rising trend in the incident of Mother to Child HIV/AIDS transinfection in the country in the last four yeard. According to the agency, 3,409 out of 73,422 samples tested between 2017 and 2020 returned positive to the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, HIV.


The assistant director of the National Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission, PMTCT, Gbenga Ijaodola, made the disclosure in Calabar, the Cross River State capital, on Monday while presenting the findings of the report at a media dialogue.


According to Ijaodola, a large number of the affected babies contracted the virus because their mothers failed to access health facilities for ante-natal care.

In 2020, 27,909 infant DNA samples were tested, 19,715 were tested and 409 babies’ results came out positive and in 2019; 26,247 infant DNA samples were collected, 19,947 were tested and 833 were positive.
“In 2018, 22,977 infant DNA samples were collected, 17,488 were tested and 808 positive results were recorded while in 2017, a total of 19,927 infant DNA samples were collected, 16,272 samples were tested and 1,359 samples came out positive
.”

Geoffrey Njoku, UNICEF’s communication specialist, said that the workshop is to bring the issue of MTCT of HIV to the front burner. According to him, while other aspects of HIV cases and transmission are widely reported across various media, the elimination of MTCT is highly important is an issue journalists must continue to highlight with a view to ensuring that babies are delivered with a reduced risk of contracting the virus.

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