Communities Essential To Pandemic Responses

A community-led response will not only get our HIV response back on track but also help Africa defeat COVID-19. When COVID-19 first hit Africa’s shores, there were real concerns that an additional 500 000[1] people could die from AIDS-related causes, including Tuberculosis, in sub-Saharan Africa in 2020–2021. Innovative measures from the continent, community responses and adherence to World Health Organization guidelines to maintain essential services amid the pandemic, among others, have mitigated this impact. But HIV services have been disrupted. And there are indications that COVID-related restrictions are having a…

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Why so many people still die from Aids-related illnesses despite more people being on treatment

Twenty years ago antiretroviral medicines for HIV were a rare luxury in South Africa. Exorbitant costs and president Thabo Mbeki’s government fierce government opposition against providing antiretroviral treatment (ART) kept it out of the public sector. Those were terrible days. Many lives were lost. By Dr Gilles Van Cutsem Today, one of the main challenges in the fight against Aids is the lack of availability of diagnostics and drugs that can help save lives of people suffering from advanced HIV; who are very vulnerable to deadly opportunistic infections such as…

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CSOs Website & Database Launched In Zimbabwe

A Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) Website and Database has been launched in Zimbabwe with the view of boosting communities support health systems and expand reach to thigh risk vulnerable HIV and AIDS affected communities. By Michael Gwarisa Zimbabwe AIDS Network (ZAN) National Coordinator, Mr Taurai Nyandoro said the evolution of the HIV epidemic is changing the landscape of HIV the response hence the need for a modern day systemes that guides and tracks trends in the HIV treatment, care and prevention matrix. They are operating in a changing landscape and…

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CSOs Raise Awareness On HIV & Disabilities At Agric Show

A consortium of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) representing people living with disabilities is riding on the 109th edition of the Zimbabwe Agricultural Show (ZAS) to raise awareness on sexual reproductive health (SRH) issues affecting people with disabilities (PWDs) in Zimbabwe. By Michael Gwarisa The consortium which consists of Deaf Zimbabwe Trust (DZT), Mashambanzou Care Trust (MCT), Disability, HIV & AIDS Trust (DHAT) with support from the Zimbabwe Aids Network (ZAN) has this week been conducting stand to stand visits on various exhibitions stands educating exhibitors on SRH concerns faced by…

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Switzerland Boost Funding For AIDS, TB and Malaria

THE Swiss government is stepping up support for the fight against infectious diseases by contributing nearly CHF100 million ($102 million) to UN health agencies. By Michael Gwarisa The Federal Council on 21 August 2019 approved a contribution of CHF64 million for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund) for the 2020–22 period and a further CHF30 million for the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) for the 2019–21 period. Speaking to HealthTimes, The Swiss Embassy in Zimbabwe said the Global Fund was one of Switzerland’s…

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770K People Died of AIDS Globally in 2018

A total of 770 000 people died of AIDS in 2019 according to latest statistics released in the UNAIDS Global Aids Update today in Eshowe South Africa. By Michael Gwairsa Responding to the statistics, Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders said  the annual number of deaths due to AIDS has declined only minimally since 2014 and such a catastrophe could be avoided through timely use of effective diagnostic tools and medicines to treat HIV/AIDS and  prevent most deaths. While an additional 2 million people are reported on antiretroviral therapy (ART), more…

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Parliament Petitioned Over ARV Shortages

PEOPLE Living With HIV (PLHIV) have handed over a petition to the Parliament of Zimbabwe in a bid to push government to urgently allocate financial resources to arrest the prevailing drug shortage before the situation goes out of hand. By Michael Gwarisa The development comes at the back of indications that the National Aids Council (NAC) is sitting on a cash pile of RTGS$20 million which they are failing to convert to United States (US) dollars needed to procure drugs from source markets. In an interview on the side-lines of…

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Lois Chingandu Joins Frontline AIDS

RENOWNED HIV and sexual reproductive health rights expert, Lois Chingandu has joined Frontline AIDS, a leading HIV and AIDS response organisation as its new Director of Evidence and Influence . By Michael Gwarisa Lois joins Frontline AIDS at a pivotal time for the organisation after serving at the helm of SAFAIDS Zimbabwe as Executive Director. The organisation, Frontline rebranded in February 2019 and is set to launch a new Global Plan of Action later this year and Lois together with her new team will play a central role in generating…

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HIV Testing Beams Longevity To People Living With HIV: Rev Kapachawo

THE old adage which says “the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step’, aptly sums up the journey through which renowned HIV activist and clergyman, Reverend Maxwell Kapachawo walked in his quest to conquer the ravenous HIV/AIDS claiming millions of lives annually. By Kudakwashe Pembere Most of you still remember the famed 2005 Television and Radio advert, “Ini ndiriPastor uyezve ndiri HIV Positive. Ndinosevenza neZinerela. Shoko rangu guru nderekuti HIV haina shasha inogona kubata chero munhu. Mwari vanechekuita nehupenyu hwangu nehwako. Naizvozvo ngativarumbidzei Hallelujah! ….Ngatinamateyi kuti Mwari…

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PSI Gets US$95 Million To Fight HIV In Zimbabwe

POPULATION Services International (PSI), was recently awarded US$95 million to scale up HIV response as well as reduce the HIV incidence in Zimbabwe. HealthTimes Reporter The grant is coming through under a new program dubbed “Going the Last Mile for HIV Control” which was granted with support from the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through USAID and the Zimbabwean Ministry of Health and Child Care (MOHCC). PSI Country Representative, Staci Leuschner said,  “the program will work closely with the MOHCC, as well as other USAID health partners and…

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