-Virus Kills 100 In First Two Quarters of 2020
– Osun Has Low Prevalence – OSACA
By Ismaeel Uthman
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) are ravaging the state of Osun more than people’s impression that few individuals are the carriers of the virus in the state.
Investigations by OSUN DEFENDER revealed that no fewer than 32, 172 people are currently living with HIV/AIDS in the state.
Also, a total of 100 people living with HIV/AIDS have reportedly died between January and June of this year, 2020 in the state.
According to a report of data analysis of outreaches conducted by Local Agency for AIDS (LACA Managers) in 2017, the virus is prevalence in three local governments of Irewole, Ilesa-East and Orolu.
The report indicated that Irewole has the highest prevalence of 3.16 per cent, followed by Ilesa-East with 2.55 per cent and Orolu which has 2.52 per cent.
In a report released in 2019, the Nigeria HIV /AIDS Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS), stated that a total of 32, 172 people were living with HIV/AIDS in Osun while the state has 37.3 per cent in the viral load suppression among the victims of the virus.
The NAIIS 2019 is a national household-based survey that assessed the prevalence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and related health indicators.
But the Executive Secretary, Osun State Agency for the Control of AIDS, (OSACA), Dr Monsur Bello said in spite of the figure of the of PLWHA, Osun has a relatively low prevalence, though not a safe state.
Bello in an interview with OSUN DEFENDER yesterday said: “When it comes to HIV, you cannot say anywhere is safe, even if you have just one person left with the disease. Infection is an ongoing thing, which means the government, organisations and individuals must not rest on our efforts until HIV/AIDS is eliminated completely.
“If a state is doing something and another state is not doing anything on it, the implication is that whatever the other state is doing is a waste of effort. HIV is a mobile infection. An infected person moves around with it.
“We need to step up preventive messages and campaigns, and management and treatment of PLWHA. If the infected people are well treated, it reduces their chances of infecting others.
With substantial compliance to drug usage and medical advice on the side of the infected person, it is going to reach a point of Virus Suppression – the virus would have been suppressed to a stage where it can’t infect others.
“But there are challenges in reaching and maintaining that stage. People are difficult to manage. The fact that the virus has reached a stage where it cannot infect others does not mean it is dead. So, people must continue to use the drug, or else there will a rebirth.”
Asked about the action plan of the state government in curtailing the spread of HIV/AIDS in the state, Bello explained that the effort of the government was centred on five thematic areas of prevention of HIV among the general and key population through combination of interventions.
Findings revealed that there are 14 treatment centres for the HIV positive patients.
The centres are: Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital Complex, Ile-Ife, Ladoke Akintola University Teaching Hospital, Osogbo, State Specialist Hospital, Asubiaro, Osogbo, State General Hospitals in Iwo, Ikire, Ede, Ila, Ilesa, Oke-Ogbo in Ife, Ijebu-Ijesa, Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Hospital, Jaleyemi, Osogbo, Seven Day Adventist Hospital, Ile-Ife, Baptist Hospital, Ejigbo and Victory Hospital, Iwo.
According to NIIA report on the HIV prevalence estimates varied by state in South West Zone, Ogun State has highest prevalence while Ekiti state was the lowest with PLWHA.