The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS, UNAIDS has welcomed the new results released by the federal government on a national HIV prevalence in Nigeria.
The results released on Wednesday showed that HIV prevalence in Nigeria is now 1.4% among adults aged 15–49 years as against the previous estimates that were 2.8%.
UNAIDS and the National Agency for the Control of AIDS had estimated that there are 1.9 million people living with HIV in Nigeria.
The data from the Nigeria National HIV/AIDS Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS) are based a revised and enhanced methodology, with then survey providing a clearer understanding of Nigeria’s HIV epidemic and shining a light on progress and the remaining gaps and challenges.
Speaking at the Nigeria HIV/AIDS indicator and impact Survey results, an event organised by the Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole and the National Agency for the control of Aids , Michel Sidibé, the Executive Director of UNAID welcomed the new estimates and said the improved understanding of Nigeria’s HIV epidemic would allow Nigeria to better reach people living with HIV and people at higher risk of acquiring HIV.
While commending the federal government and its partners for conducting the survey, which provides a much better understanding of the country’s HIV epidemic, he urged the stakeholders not to let their guards down.
“Let us use the results of this survey to better focus our delivery of HIV prevention, treatment and care services to the people in the greatest need and ensure that Nigeria gets on track to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030,” he said.
The new data showed that Nigeria’s national HIV prevalence is 1.4% among adults aged 15–49 years. It also showed that women between the age of 15–49 years are more than twice likely to be living with HIV than men (1.9% versus 0.9%.)
The difference in HIV prevalence between women and men is greatest among younger adults, with young women aged 20–24 years more than three times as likely to be living with HIV as young men in the same age group.
The NAIIS was led by the Government of Nigeria through the Federal Ministry of Health and the National Agency for the Control of AIDS.