The United Nations (UN) has commended Zimbabwe for achieving successes in reducing transmission of the HIV virus that causes Aids from mothers to babies.
The UN placed Zimbabwe on number 3 out 23 focus countries in the sub-region moving to eliminate the transmission of HIV from mother to child. The UN said in a statement:
… antiretroviral therapy for the prevention of mother to child transmission greatly reduced new HIV infections among children… new child infections have been averted.
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UNAids said early infant diagnosis, which entails testing infants of women living with HIV within two months of birth was crucial as this helps those who are infected take necessary measures before it’s too late.
At the same time, HIV disease progression among prenatally infected infants is much faster than among adults.
Without treatment, up to 50 per cent of children born with HIV will die before their second birthday, with peak mortality at two or three months of age (12–14).
Zimbabwe is said to be on course to achieve the 90-90-90 strategy. The goal of the strategy is to ensure that by the year 2020 90 per cent of people who are HIV infected will be diagnosed, 90 per cent of people who are diagnosed will be on antiretroviral treatment and 90 per cent of those who receive antiretrovirals will be virally suppressed.