Lusaka ranks highest in HIV prevalence rate

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-Permanent Secretary in the ministry of Community Development Mother and Child Health Elwyn Chomba says Lusaka district has the highest HIV prevalence percentage rate in the country.

Ms Chomba disclosed this in a speech read on her behalf by Lusaka Provincial Medical Officer, Tuckson Lambat, during the launch of the Universal HIV testing and counselling campaign held at Chawama grounds today.

She disclosed that the HIV prevalence rate for Lusaka district stands at 20.8 per cent, making it the highest district compared to others.

The PS said new infections have been increasing from an estimated 67,602 adults in 2006 and are projected to rise further to 72,019 in 2015.

She bemoaned that only 15 per cent of Zambians access counselling despite the country recording a high HIV prevalence rate.

Mrs Chomba stressed that there is need to encourage all sexually active youths and adults to undergo voluntary counselling and testing.

She said sexually active groups will be able to make informed decision once they under HIV counselling and testing.

And speaking earlier at the same function World Health Organisation (WHO) National Programme officer in charge, Solomon Kagulula, who read the speech on behalf of WHO- Country Representative, Olusegun Babaniyi, called for scaling up HIV counselling and testing.

Dr Babaniyi said new interventions should be initiated that will help to scale up HIV counselling and testing among sexually active groups.