By ALICE NACHILEMBE
Chingola District Health Office says the district has 23,215 people who are on Anti-Retro-Treatment (ART) out of a 307025 population.
The district has also tested 13,298 clients in 2022 of which 1,296 tested HIV positive.
Chingola District Health, Director Davies Mwewa, said the HIV positivity rate in the district is around 10 percent and has been maintained.
Dr Mwewa was speaking at the commemoration of National HIV Testing, counseling and Treatment day held at Chiwempala market, he said the given target for people to be put on treatment in the district is 33,000 but a balance of 10, 000 people leaving with HIV have not yet come forward to know their HIV status.
He said this is a sad development because HIV transmission cannot be prevented as others are still spreading it.
Dr Mwewa said HIV Testing plays an important role to linking HIV positive individuals to ART and Voluntary Counseling and testing (VCT) is one of the entry points.
“We need behavioral change to fight HIV in our district and as a Nation because stigma and discrimination still exists,” he said.
And Chingola Mayor Johnson Kang’ombe, said there is need for the general population to get tested to reduce disease progression and disease transmission.
Mr Kangombe said HIV/AIDS continues to impact everyone differently hence the need to hold hands together to ensure that intervetions applied yield results in moving towards reducing new infections.
He said this in a speech read on his behalf by Chngola deputy Mayor Richard Kabwe who added that government has developed the HIV coordination function to the local authorities in order to facilitaty the delivery of programmes, increase buy in to solution and increase awareness.
Chingola District Commissioner Raphael Chimupi said HIV remains a pandemic that cannot be overlooked but needs consented efforts from all stake holders to make head ways.