Kaduna - No fewer than 197,000 people in Kaduna State were screened in the past six months to determine their HIV status, an official said.
Malam Lawal Abubakar, the Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT)’s Focal Person in the state’s Ministry of Health, made this known during a news conference at UNICEF office, Kaduna, on Thursday.
Abubakar explained that during the screening, conducted with the support of UNICEF, 7,974 tested positive, while 189,000 were negative.
He added that during the period under review, 125,879 pregnant women were tested, also in collaboration with UNICEF, out of which, 2,397 tested positive and 1,842 placed on drugs.
The focal person said no fewer than 7,314 children from age 0 to 14 also tested positive in the state from beginning of prevention of new infection of HIV progamme 20 years ago to date.
He, however, said only 2,690 of the figure were placed on drugs.
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"Currently, there are 38,255 people living with HIV/AIDS in the state that are placed on drugs, including pregnant women.
"And from the beginning of preventing new HIV infection programme till date, we have placed 87,055 people on drugs, one of the highest in the country.
"But you can see that it is not all the people that were tested positive that are placed on drugs. This is one of our major challenges," Abubakar said.
He commended UNICEF and other donor agencies for the support in fighting the pandemic in the state.
He said UNICEF supported the state with more than N82 million in 2014 through its various intervention programmes on HIV and AIDS.
He noted that the Fund had equally supported the state with N30 million from January to September 2015.
The state government prioritised its areas of intervention with UNICEF in respect to HIV and AIDS with a view to reaching out to HIV positive pregnant women and children and placed them on drugs, he said.