"); NewWindow.document.close(); return false; }

Namibia rolls out third National AIDS plan
Wednesday 15 December 2004
Home About PlusNews Country Profiles News Briefs Special Reports Subscribe Archive IRINnews


East Africa
Great Lakes
Horn of Africa
Southern Africa
West Africa
RSS - News Briefs


PlusNews E-mail Subscription

NAMIBIA: Namibia rolls out third National AIDS plan

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

©  Salamatu Foundation

Namibia hopes to cut its HIV rate by more than half

JOHANNESBURG, 19 April (PLUSNEWS) - Namibia plans to reduce its current HIV/AIDS prevalence rate of 22 percent by more than half over the next five years.

The ministry of health is hoping to achieve this national goal through the recently launched Third Medium Term Plan (MTP III), a multisectoral response to the epidemic.

"The objective of the MTP III is to reduce the incidence of HIV infection to below epidemic threshold. In epidemiological terms this implies less than one new infection for every existing person living with HIV/AIDS," Dr Norbert Forster, Under Secretary Health and Social Welfare Policy of the Namibian Ministry of Health, explained to PlusNews.

The MTP III will run until 2009 and cost over Namibian $3.7 billion (US $575 million), of which The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has committed about N $800 million (US $124 million), or just less than a quarter of the resources required for the five-year effort.

Despite the deficit in funding MTP III, the involvement of all sectors of society was cause for hope insisted Salvator Niyonzima, the UNAIDS Country Coordinator.

"The commitment of the government will be converted into dollar resources, which we've already seen as the national health budget is increasing. Commitment from development partners is evident as HIV/AIDS is mainstreamed into poverty reduction. The private sector is increasingly investing a lot of resources. At a recent meeting of the Council of Churches in Namibia, the churches agreed to increase the resources they would put into the HIV/AIDS response," Niyonzima told PlusNews.

Some private sector companies have started implementing workplace-based highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART), while seven of the country's 35 public hospitals are also providing it. MTP III will roll out HAART to an additional 23 centres, ensuring that 30 of the 35 public hospitals across the country will be able to provide the medication.

"The MTP III is an excellent tool because it looks at HIV/AIDS from all angles: from prevention to impact mitigation, treatment, care and support. It also ... [remedies] some of the shortcomings of MTPII ... published last year," said Niyonzima.

According to a national survey conducted in 2002, AIDS-related illnesses contributed to more than 55 percent of all recorded deaths.

"This fight against HIV/AIDS in the country requires a partnership and the inclusion of as many stakeholders as possible," said Forster.

The rollout of antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) began last July; by late September just over 150 people were receiving free treatment. According to Health Minister Libertina Amathila, at least 1,500 people were now receiving ARVs at six state facilities across the country.

Namibia's first case of HIV was diagnosed in 1986 and the first HIV/AIDS plan was implemented shortly after independence in 1990.


Recent NAMIBIA Reports
MDGs - the challenge of HIV/AIDS "can be overcome",  24/Nov/04
New hope for Caprivi with launch of AIDS treatment,  15/Oct/04
Orphan crisis a disaster greater than floods/drought,  4/May/04
Lack of funds deepens the plight of orphans,  29/Apr/04
UN agencies launch emergency appeal,  10/Mar/04
Sida Info Services
Le Fonds mondial de lutte contre le SIDA, la tuberculose et le paludisme
Le Réseau Afrique 2000
The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria

PlusNews does not take responsibility for info in links supplied.

[Back] [Home Page]

Click to send any feedback, comments or questions you have about IRIN's Website or if you prefer you can send an Email to

The material contained on this Web site comes to you via IRIN, a UN humanitarian information unit, but may not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations or its agencies. If you re-print, copy, archive or re-post any item on this site, please retain this credit and disclaimer. Quotations or extracts should include attribution to the original sources. All graphics and Images on this site may not be re-produced without the express permission of the original owner. All materials copyright © UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs 2004