Only three people test positive at HIV conference

03 Dec 2016 12:30pm
SWAKOPMUND, 03 DEC (NAMPA) - Three people tested HIV positive at the National HIV/Aids conference in Swakopmund earlier this week, where voluntary testing was available to attendees.
Nampa obtained the statistics from the Walvis Bay Corridor Group Wellness Service that conducted the voluntary testing with the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS).
Tests were conducted from 28 to 30 November during the conference and were extended to 01 December in observation of World Aids Day.
Wellness Service Project Manager, Edward Shivute on Saturday said 141 people tested HIV negative. Thirty-eight people only tested their cholesterol and glucose levels.
Shivute said out of the 182 participants, 99 were men and 83 were women.
Minister of Health and Social Services, Bernard Haufiku was one of those who took the HIV test. He did so to encourage other men to follow suit in efforts to get everyone tested and receive the necessary and timely treatment.
Shivute said the three positive tests should not be regarded as a general reflection of HIV prevalence along the coast.
“It does not mean we have a low rate of HIV positive people in Swakopmund. The three new cases mean most of those tested were not positive, so there is no generalisations.”
It can also mean that those who came for testing already knew they are HIV negative and were doing routine testing.
At the official opening of the HIV/Aids conference on Wednesday, Haufiku said out of the estimated 210 000 people infected by HIV in the public sector, 150 000 are on anti-retro viral treatment.
This, he said, means Namibia is already at 64 per cent of the target to test 90 per cent of the people estimated to be HIV positive.
To achieve the remaining 26 per cent, Namibia need to increase the rate of testing per annum by 5.5 per cent.
“This translates into testing about 18 000 people per annum or 1 400 people every month or about 46 people every single day or two people every hour for the next consecutive four years,” said the minister.