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Over 1,000 people live with HIV/Aids in Jonglei: official

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January 21, 2017 (BOR) -At least 1, 067 people are currently living with HIV/Aids in South Sudan’s Jonglei state, an official disclosed.

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Jonglei state HIV/Aids and STI coordinator Ajak Mach Gut, January 20, 2017 (ST)

In an interview with Sudan Tribune Friday, the coordinator for HIV/Aids and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), Ajak Mac Gut, said infection was prevalence rate was high within ages 15 to 46.

“HIV is very high among the youth, mostly from the age of 15 to 46. These people are vulnerable group to the disease, as most of them are victims of HIV”, Mac said during the interview at Bor hospital.

HIV, the main cause of Acquired Immune-Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), is described as a condition in human beings in which progressive failure of the immune system allows life-threatening opportunistic infections and cancers, which could lead to death.

According to state statistics, 785 people lived with the virus in 2015, but the number of infected persons rose to 1,067 by the end of 2016.

Mac said the rise in cases of the deadly disease could mainly be attributed to returnees from Eastern African countries, who took refuge in Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia during the long civil war.

“During the years of civil war, many people from here went to Kenya, others went to Uganda and Ethiopia. When they started coming back homes, most of them came with this disease and then they passed it on to others,” he told Sudan Tribune.

However, although HIV/Aids related death tolls have not been ascertained in the state, it is highly believed to be a contributing factor to the current mortality rate in Jonglei, the official stressed.

“The HIV infection rate in Jonglei state could be more than 1.3 per cent, which the national infection rate,” explained Mac.

Out of the 1,067 infected people, only 599 people are reportedly registered in the state hospital for monthly drug supply, which are used to suppress the virus to undetectable levels, when adhered to.

Mac further said a total of 468 people had dropped out from taking drugs in the state hospital and other health facilities in the counties.

“Some of these people are feared dead while others might have registered in other places within or outside the country for treatment,” he added.

According to the health official, majority of the pregnant mothers who were found to be HIV positive in Jonglei state, neither turned up for drugs, nor informed their husbands about their health status.

Last year, Mac said, 84 pregnant women were found HIV positive, but only three were coming for drugs, while 81 never showed up.

“These 81 women have their 81 husbands who are also infected, but they had not come back for drugs. Some did not even inform their husbands about their status, so this is a big challenge,” said Mac.

He added, “Some of these men could be having more than two wives, so all of them may be infected. In this case, the number of infection outside there is very high”.

He advised the youth to stop involving themselves in random sex activities to prevent the infection. He encouraged the use of condoms, voluntary testing and counseling as well as abstinence.

(ST)

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  • 22 January 19:39, by Paul Ongee

    I don’t know why readers don’t wanna make comments on this article. Is it not a good one? Of course, not. Ajak Mac Gut you did a good thing to alert and educate people on this deadly disease. We need to watch out folks. The figure and the infection rate is alarming. What about in Juba, Wau, Makalal and all other towns where night life is prevalent and fascinating? With or without night life, one.

    repondre message

    • 22 January 19:56, by Paul Ongee

      What about in Juba, Wau, Makalal and all other towns where night life is prevalent and fascinating with disco lights? With or without night life, one can still get it because temptation under the influence of beer or soda is the order of the night, weekends and functions where singles and the ringless fingers look more attractive than housewives, husbands, boyfriends and girlfriends. Protection is

      repondre message

    • 22 January 19:58, by Paul Ongee

      What about in Juba, Wau, Makalal and all other towns where night life is prevalent and fascinating with disco lights? With or without night life, one can still get it because temptation under the influence of beer or soda is the order of the night, weekends and functions where singles and the ringless fingers look more attractive than housewives, husbands, boyfriends and girlfriends. Protection is

      repondre message

      • 22 January 20:08, by Eastern

        Paul Ongee,

        In South Sudan, folks are afraid of bullets only; any cause of death is non issue!

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    • 23 January 03:45, by Wis Fox

      People of Jonglei should make a case against Kuol Manyang Juuk, Paul Malong Awan and their big boss President Salva Kiir, for bring in Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) that brought HIV/AIDS to Jonglei state in earlier 2014, and let them not to put blame on Refugees who turn home from neighbouring countries from 2009 during independent, and if it was the refugees that brought HIV/AIDS, the numb

      repondre message

    • 23 January 03:48, by Wis Fox

      People of Jonglei should make a case against Kuol Manyang Juuk, Paul Malong Awan and their big boss President Salva Kiir, for bring in Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) that brought HIV/AIDS to Jonglei state in earlier 2014, and let them not to put blame on Refugees who turn home from neighbouring countries from 2009 during independent, and if it was the refugees that brought HIV/AIDS, the numb

      repondre message

  • 23 January 01:14, by Gabriel KK

    Dear all,
    Some of us are safe from bullet and hunger but we are all vulnerable to HIV/AIDS and other STI/STDS as mentioned by Ajak. The only solutions to this endless epidemic is to be vigilant and show love and care to those victims. There is a culture of finger-pointing and stigmatization in our communities which forced some of these people to hide their status in the fear of being harassed.....

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    • 23 January 01:24, by Gabriel KK

      for being sick form deadly disease. Numbers will keep on increasing if we don’t change our attitude and begin to see HIV/AIDS as a disease that anyone get in regardless of their position in the community. I am appealing to these infected citizens to disclose their status and to seek medical support immediately because medications has been found to prolong life. Our Government should prioritize....

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      • 23 January 01:30, by Gabriel KK

        civic education and awareness and directed the good NGOs not the briefcase NGOs to handle this heart breaking issue. We will finish one by one unless we design appropriate intervention strategies. There are now thousands of orphans in eastern African Countries as a results of HIV/AIDS. LETS ALL STOP STIGMATIZATION AND NUMBERS WILL DECREASE!!

        repondre message

  • 23 January 06:24, by Naath

    If you compare HIV and Kiir, HIV is much better and fair than Dinka tribal gangs leader Kiir and his Dinka council of elders. HIV has been around in Jonglei since 2005 but it has not burning houses and looting cattle like Kiir and JCE of evil.

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