Harare – Zimbabwe has achieved and surpassed the global target on HIV testing, treatment and viral suppression, three years ahead of the set time, state news agency New Ziana reported on Wednesday.
The Joint UN Programme on HIV/Aids (UNAids) aims for HIV testing, treatment and viral suppression rates to be 95% by 2025.
Of all the HIV-positive people in the country, 95% now have undetectable HIV-1 RNA regardless of previous diagnosis or antiretroviral therapy status, the news agency quoted Chiedza Mupanguri, an official from the Ministry of Health and Child Care, as saying.
Among those who know their status, the percentage has surpassed the required target and is now at 96%; those who are positive and are on antiretroviral therapy are 97%, said Mupanguri.
“The country has met the viral suppression target in the UNAids 95-95-95 target and is one of the highest reported levels of population viral suppression globally,” Mupanguri said.
Precious Andifasi, the deputy co-coordinator for Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission in the ministry, said the data showed that interventions were effective in increasing population viral suppression to very high levels.
She said according to the national strategic plan running from 2020 to 2025, HIV treatment was consuming more resources, hence the need to bolster prevention measures.
At least 1.3 million people are living with HIV in Zimbabwe, of which 1.2 million are adults, and the rest are children.
Zimbabwe has an 11.6% adult HIV prevalence rate, according to the UNAids.