Panafrican News Agency

High AIDS prevalence rate in young people rising in Congo

Brazzaville, Congo (PANA) - The Congolese Minister of Health and Population, Jacqueline Lydia Mikolo, announced on Tuesday in Brazzaville that new HIV / AIDS infections are dominant in juvenile areas with a considerable increase since 2012 in Congo.

She made the statement during a workshop to validate the national strategic framework for combating HIV / AIDS and accelerate the achievement of targets towards goals 90, 90, 90.

According to the minister, young people between the ages of 15 and 24 contribute about 29%. Among girls, new infections are four times that of boys.

"The feminization and youthfulness of the epidemic persist in Congo and is risky if care is not taken to jeopardize the achievement of the health sector's sustainable development goals," she said.

The document will provide Congo with quality reference strategies for the implementation of international and regional commitments. It will show the HIV situation, which remains of concern in two categories of vulnerable populations: men who have sex with men, sex workers, adolescents and young people aged ten to twenty.

Mikolo pointed out that with high prevalence levels for HIV and sexually transmitted infections, key populations combine with other factors of vulnerability. This, she continues, is because this population is difficult to access, operating in networks with low accessibility to HIV services, treatment, psychosocial support due to the stigma and discrimination of gender-based violence and all kinds of barriers to access to services.

However, the Congolese Minister of Health mentioned the development of new requests for funding from the Global Fund, the signing of the letter of commitment to benefit from the support of the Global Fund and the increase in financial allocations dedicated HIV / AIDS for the current year.

Goals 90, 90, 90 are a policy of UNAIDS which consists in allowing people living with HIV to know their HIV status.

The policy also allows HIV-infected people screened to receive antiretroviral therapy, it is noted.

-0- PANA MB/IS/KND/VAO 26Feb2020