National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA) yesterday said 98 per cent of persons living with HIV in the country were on treatment, with 95 per cent on viral suppression.
It noted that as of September, 1,619,133 were on treatment, saying despite the availability of free treatment, there were children less than 15 years living with HIV, difficult to find and put on treatment.
NACA’s Director-General, Dr. Gambo Aliyu, spoke in Abuja at this year’s World AIDS Day, with the theme: Equalise to End AIDS: Equal Access to Treatment & Prevention Services.”
He urged stakeholders, especially states, to address inequalities that pose barriers to ending the disease and increase domestic funding for HIV interventions.
“In Nigeria, we are moving closer and closer to our targets. We are certainly proud of the achievements we made, working together with our partners. Today, we have 90 per cent of people who are HIV positive … 98 per cent of these are on HIV treatment and 95 per cent of those on treatment have attained viral suppression.”
“Our treatment sites have increased from 251 in 2007 to 2,262 in 2020. New HIV infections gradually declined from 103,404 in 2019 to 92,323 in 2021. Significant growth in key population treatment centers, 10 in 2017 with a coverage of 16,147 to 118 in 2021 with coverage of over 221,010.”
UNAIDS Country Director, Dr. Leo Zekeng, and Executive Secretary of the Country Coordinating Mechanism of the Global Fund Nigeria, Dozie Ezechukwu, urged the country to ramp up domestic funding for health interventions and programs, as Nigeria cannot continue to rely on international donors.