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Husbands challenged to accompany pregnant wives to clinic for HIV test

Author: Charles Wote | Published: Thursday, October 28, 2021

An official at South Sudan HIV/AIDS Commission has challenged men to visit clinics together with their wives for the mandatory HIV test during pregnancy.

In July 2021, the Ministry of health revealed that the HIV prevalence among pregnant women between 15-49 years in the country was on raise.

Men reportedly fear appearing at clinics due to the HIV test results.

“Men don’t even come to the clinic with you. They wait at home. ‘You did the test?’ He asks. If the wife says ‘yes’, and it’s negative, he says ‘Oh. I am happy. My wife is negative; I am negative,’” said Dr. Acol Ayom Dor, deputy chairperson.

The prevalence was found to be higher in rural areas with 4.4 percent, than the 3 percent in urban areas.

Dr. Acol told Eye Radio on Wednesday that majority of the pregnant women going for HIV services during antenatal care are in urban areas.

In June 2021, the commission said South Sudan had not made a significant stride to reduce HIV transmission or move towards ending the pandemic.

According to the UN-AIDs, an estimated 200, 000 people were living with HIV in South Sudan in 2016.

It disclosed that only 10 percent of people living with HIV were accessing life-saving HIV treatment.

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