#COVID-19: NAC Adjusts HIV Services According To COVID-19 Framework

THE National Aids Council (NAC) says it has modified its operations in accordance with the new COVID-19 environment in a bid to avoid disruption of critical services under the prevailing pandemic. By Michael Gwarisa In an Interview with HealthTimes, NAC Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Dr Benard Madzima said services were largely affected at the initial stages of the lockdown owing to strict restrictions which characterized the environment then but they have since found innovative ways of availing critical services to communities across the country. Since the start of the national…

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ART Adherence Critical Even During Lockdown- SAfAIDS

SOUTHERN Africa HIV and AIDS Information Dissemination Service (SAfAIDS) Sub Regional Head and Country Representative in South Africa,  Mr Ngoni Chibukire says adherence to lifesaving Antiretroviral drugs should be observed religiously despite the ongoing lockdowns. By Michael Gwarisa His calls come at the back of increased reports of cases whereby people living with HIV in most parts of the SADC region have been failing to access their ARVs during the lockdown period. In an interview with HealthTimes, Mr Chibukire said the health needs of PLHIV have not changed because there…

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Decentralize Third line ART Drugs Collection During Lockddown -Rights group

MINISTRY of Health and Child Welfare (MOHCC) should consider decentralizing the third line regimen of Anti Retroviral Therapy (ART) to avoid increase on defaulter rate, an HIV/AIDS rights group said. HealthTimes Reporter Currenlty, the third line drug collection services are being offered at Parirenyatwa in Harare and United Bulawayo Hospital (UBH). Third line therapy, sometimes called salvage or rescue therapy, is a treatment regiments for people who have few or limited anti drug options. This includes people who have failed are least two previous anti HIV regiments or people with…

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DEAF Zim Embarks On ART Defaulter Tracking Drive

DEAF Zimbabwe Trust (DZT) has kick-started a community Anteretroviral Treatment (ART) defaulter tracking campaign aimed at reducing default rates and increasing uptake of the live saving drugs amongst people living with HIV. By Michael Gwarisa Speaking to HealthTimes, Veronica Mwanza from Deaf Zimbabwe Trust said the project also has a a disability component where they folloup and offer support to people with various disabilities. We do what we call Defaulter tracking and psycho social support and adherence support to people living with HIV in selected areas that the project cover…

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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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