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56,000 people living with HIV in Sudan: WHO

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Peer educator Arafat speaks with a group of school children and distribute HIV-AIDS awareness materials, in a community in Khartoum, Sudan (UNICEF SUDAN Photo)
October 23, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - The World Health Organization (WHO) on Sunday said that there around 56,000 people living with HIV in Sudan, including 3500 child and 2300 pregnant women.

WHO official Mohamed Sayed Ahmed pointed that the number of HIV-positive people is increasing in Sudan according to the latest survey conducted in 2015.

Speaking at HIV Prevention Seminar at Africa University in Khartoum, Ahmed said that HIV infection rate is low in Sudan, but prevention and screening remain also very low.

“We need to exert more efforts to increase screening, education and testing,” Ahmed said.

It is worth noting that the figures of WHO on HIV cases in Sudan is less than the figures provided by the Sudanese Ministry of Health in December 2014. According to the Sudanese authorities there are 79,000 people living with HIV in Sudan of which 19.000 are in Khartoum State and 1500 new HIV infections are registered every year.

On his part, the Federal Minister of Health, Bahr Idriss Abu Garda, reiterated Sudan’s commitment to prevent HIV and to cooperate with all bodies working in HIV epidemic control.

“We need to effectively response to HIV cases reported by WHO to reduce infection rate and treat the current cases,” said Abu Garda.

Sudan has been combating HIV/AIDS since 1987, after the country’s first AIDS case was reported in 1986.

(ST)

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