Malawi is one of the countries with the highest HIV prevalence in the world. According to the Malawi Population HIV Impact Assessment 2015-2016 (MPHIA) report, HIV prevalence amongst adults aged between 15 and 44 years stands at 10.6 percent. The epidemic largely affects women; whose prevalence is 12.8% as compared to men (8.2%). The disparity of HIV prevalence by sex is most pronounced among young adults 25-29 years old where HIV prevalence is three times higher amongst females (14.1%) than males (4.8%). A total of 900,000 people are living with HIV in Malawi, and the country registers about 28,000 new HIV infections annually amongst 15-64 years old.
The Malawi National HIV and AIDS Strategic Plan 2015-2020 adopts the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS Treatment Targets. Thus, Malawi intends diagnose 90% of all people living with HIV, start and retain 90% of those diagnosed with HIV on ART, and achieve viral load suppression for 90% of all patients on ART by 2020. The country has made great strides and the goal of ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 is possible. The MPHIA reports that 72.7% of PLHIV in Malawi know their status; about 88.6% of the people who know their status are reported to be taking ART and over 90% of the PLHIV who reported to be taking ART are virally suppressed. The Malawi HIV Program however experiences some critical challenges that require immediate attention in order to sustain the progress being made.
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is supporting the Malawi government in operationalizing its strategic plan. The organization signed a memorandum of understanding with the Malawi Ministry of Health in 2016, and started supporting a total twelve health facilities across four districts in 2017. Half of the facilities where AHF Malawi is working are in the South West Zone, a region with the second highest HIV prevalence (15.9%). AHF Malawi program employees a number of strategies as listed below: enhancing access and availability of quality HIV preventive services, improving quality of HIV medical care, human resource support, infrastructural development. The program is also developing its policy and advocacy portfolio in order to contribute to sustaining an enabling environment for HIV prevention efforts at national, district and community levels.
- Ukwe and Kang’oma health centers in Lilongwe District, MOH Central West Zone
- Mphanthi and Nganja health centers in Dedza district, MOH Central West Zone
- Nzama and Kalimanjira health centers in Ntcheu district, MOH Central West Zone
- Ngabu Rural Hospital, Chithumba, Bereu, Ndakwera, Nkumaniza and Gaga Health Centers in Chikwawa district, MOH South West Zone.
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