Early Child Marriages Expose Marange Adolescent Girls To HIV Infection- FACT

FAMILY Aids Caring Trust  (FACT) Community Health Officer, Ms Mirriam Muchadzingwa says there is need to scale up efforts to curb early child marriages in Marange District in order to address the growing HIV burden in young girls. By Michael Gwarisa Speaking to HealthTimes during a Media Tour in Marange recently, Mrs Muchadzingwa said even though the rate of new infections in young girls was still low in the district, cases were being recorded and early child marriages could be the biggest source of the infections. This place is not…

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NatPharm Roasted Over ART Shortages

PARLIAMENTARIANS and Global Fund’s Zimbabwe Country Coordinating Committee(CCM) took turns on Monday to grill the National Pharmaceutical Company (NatPharm) for misleading government claiming the country had sufficient stocks of antiretroviral treatment (ART)drugs. By Kudakwashe Pembere Giving oral evidence to the joint committees on Health and  HIV, NatPharm Operations Manager, Mr Charles Mwaramba said the drugs warehouse had close to 100 percent stocks of 12 selected ART drugs. This however, did not go down well with Parliamentarians who blamed the organization for politicking at the expense of human lives. Midlands Senator…

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Zim Receives 3rd Line ARVs For Children and Adolescents

JANSSEN Pharmaceutical Companies a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson has donated a sizable quantity of Third-line Antiretroviral (ARV) drugs to Zimbabwe as part of its efforts to address the huge ARV drug resistance burden prevalent in children and young people. By Michael Gwarisa Through a program dubbed the New Horizons Collaborative, an integrated approach to improving pediatric HIV care, a total of 5000 children from the SADC region are set to benefit. Through the program, Janseen provides Darunavir and Etravirine, including child friendly formulations, free of charge to eligible countries…

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Is NAC On Autopilot?

IT’S been three months since Health and Child Care Minister, Dr Obadiah Moyo dismissed the whole National Aids Council (NAC) board over its failure to turn around fortunes of the organisation. By Michael Gwarisa Not only is NAC running without a board but the organisation has no substantive Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in place. Currently, Mr Raymond Yekeye the Operations Director has been CEO on an acting capacity  for the past six months now. As a news publication, we have made countless efforts to contact the Minster regarding the NAC…

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People Living With HIV Worried Over Expired ARVs…MCAZ Calls For Calm

PEOPLE living with HIV (PLHIV) have expressed concerns over failure by government and the Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe (MCAZ) to consult with them following the expiration of Antiretroviral (ARV) drugs. By Michael Gwarisa The development follows revelations that health institutions continued dispensing ARVs even after they had passed their shelf life. This has not  gone down well with PLHIV and on ART who  believe the consultation process should have started with them since they are the ones directly affected by any changes in the drugs. Speaking to HealthTimes, Mrs…

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Zim Commences DTG Drug Transition

DEPUTY Director HIV/AIDS and STIs in the ministry of health and child care (MoHCC), Dr Tsitsi Apollo says the country has already commenced its transition process from Tenovir/Lamuvidene/Efavirens to Dolutegravir (DTG), a first line regimen of Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) which has less side effected and a rapid viral suppression. By Michael Gwarisa The whole transition process will be completed come February 2020 and in the process, drugs such as Navirapine (NVP) will be phased out with indications on the ground confirming that healthcare providers have already been advised to limit…

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NAC Warns Against Drug Abuse and Junky Foods

THE intake of dangerous drugs, fatty foods and other medicines could weaken the effect of Anti Retro Viral (ARVs) in the human body as this may lead to liver damage and increased toxicity, the National Aids Council (NAC) has warned. By Michael Gwarisa in Mutare Speaking at the Civil Society Treatment Support Literacy meeting in Mutare, NAC provincial manager for Harare Mr Adonija Muzondiona said the action of ARVS may be affected by certain other medicines. “This can reduce their effectiveness by lowering the amount of ARVs absorbed, leading to…

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Africaid Suspends Zvandiri Program In Nine Districts

AFRICAID says it will be suspending its Zvandiri initiative from Zaka, Insiza and Gutu and other six districts for the period October 2018 to September 2019, amidst indications that there has been a 67 percent cut in the level of funding from donors for the period the forthcoming year.   By Michael Gwarisa The Zvandiri program, run by Africaid, began in Zimbabwe in 2004 as a support group model for adolescents living with HIV. This program provides differentiated care for children, adolescents and young people living with HIV (aged 6–24…

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PEPFAR Takes HIV Awareness To HIFA

THE US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has upped its campaign to create HIV/AIDS awareness and Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights services (SRHR) at this year’s edition of the Harare International Festival of Arts (HIFA). In an interview with HealthTimes at their First Street stand, PEPFAR Coordinator, Funmi Adesanya said HIFA had provided them with an opportunity to interact with many people from various backgrounds and they had managed to effectively spread the message about testing, adherence to medication among other things. “We are here supporting HIFA to…

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96 percent of People On ART Still on First Line Regimen

Director, AIDS and TB Programme in the Ministry of Health and Child Care  Dr. Owen Mugurungi says 96 percent of people living with HIV (PLHIV) and on Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) are still on the first line regimen owing to comprehensive HIV treatment and prevention efforts by government and development partners towards fighting the epidemic. By Michael Gwarisa Addressing delegates at the handover of  new ART sites and Pharmacy stores in the capital, Dr Mgurungi said Zimbabwe had made strides in reducing the impact of the epidemic and improving ART adherence…

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