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First lady launches HIV/AIDS initiative
Saturday 30 April 2005
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BURUNDI: First lady launches HIV/AIDS initiative


[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]



©  

HIV/AIDS prevention billboard message in Burundi.

BUJUMBURA, 17 March (PLUSNEWS) - Burundian first lady Aude Ndayizeye launched on Wednesday the country's chapter of the African Synergy against HIV/AIDS and Suffering, an initiative of the first ladies of African countries, with an headquarters in Yaounde, Cameroon.

Under the initiative, activities focusing on the prevention of HIV infection from mother-to-child would be undertaken, Ndayizeye said in the capital, Bujumbura. She added that mother-to-child HIV infection was second to infection through sexual intercourse in the spread of the disease.

She said figures on Burundi's mother-to-child HIV infections were alarming. "Studies conducted to date show that 20 percent of pregnant women in urban areas and 6 percent in rural areas are HIV positive, the majority are discovered to be HIV positive during pre-natal consultation," she said.

She added that in Bujumbura, 1,200 out of 6,000 pregnancies annually were found HIV positive and at least 480 babies were born HIV positive ever year. She said these statistics on HIV/AIDS infections ought to serve as reminders to the public to take responsibility and stop the spread of the pandemic.

She appealed to the government and its development partners as well as other actors in the fight against HIV/AIDS to increase their efforts to protect children exposed to HIV by providing antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) right from birth.

Recent studies by the ministry in charge of HIV/AIDS show that if a pregnant women is put on an ARV treatment, the chances of the baby getting infected are reduced from 25 percent to 8 percent. The ministry announced recently that it would provide healthcare in 2004 for 1,000 HIV positive pregnant women, up from 550 in 2003.

[ENDS]


 
Recent BURUNDI Reports
HIV-positive people demand protective laws,  27/Apr/04
Medical personnel trained on prevention of mother-to-child HIV infection,  30/Mar/04
Germany gives €7.5 million for water, refugees, HIV/AIDS control,  17/Feb/04
HIV-positive civil servants to pay 20 percent for ARVs,  23/Dec/03
Women wake up to HIV/AIDS,  25/Nov/03
Links
AIDS Media Center
Le portail d'informations générales de la Côte d’Ivoire
VIH Internet
Sida Info Services
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