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 Wednesday 16 June 2010
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Country Profile: Eritrea
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AIDS Programmes

National Strategic Framework: 2003-2007


Assessment of overall response and capacity

The government has not yet established one national coordinating authority outside the Ministry of Health.

The current border conflict between Eritrea and Ethiopia has resulted in the drafting of an increased number of young people into the military. The 1998 border war left large numbers of mobile populations (internally displaced person returnees or deportees) who are at risk of HIV infection.

There are no laws or regulations protecting those who are infected and affected by HIV infection. There is however a People Living with HIV Association set up by the government, which is making an effort to address stigma and discrimination informally. The Ministry of Justice is not yet involved in the response to HIV. Treatment and care of HIV positive people started in August 2005 and over 1,200 people are receiving antiretroviral drugs.

Critical issues and major challenges

Barriers to prevention, treatment and care are mainly the lack of skilled health-care workers and limited resources. Eritrea had one bilateral donor (USAID) but they left in October 2005.

Challenges include:
the need for support of development partners in mobilizing resources for HIV and ensuring that these resources are efficiently and effectively used;
the need to build capacity of skilled personnel in the various aspects of HIV to scale up prevention, treatment, care and support;
the need to scale up voluntary counselling and testing and prevention of mother-to-child testing to include the rural areas and promote access to all.

Source: UNAIDS

HIV/AIDS Organisations

  Ministry of Health
Contact person: Tel: +291 1 117549
Location: P.O. Box 212 Asmara Fax: +291 1 122899
What we do:

  National AIDS and TB Control Division
Contact person: Dr Andeberhan Tesfazion Tel: +291 1 121562
Location: Fax: +291 1 122899 / 125835
What we do:

Contact person: Amanuel Tesfamichael Tel: +291 1 202772
Location: P.O. Box 5537 Asmara Fax:
What we do: PLWHA association; fights against stigma and discrimination of PLWHA; care and support programmes; awareness programmes; advocacy/legal rights.

 Population Services International - Eritrean Social Marketing Group
Contact person: Rob Maroni Tel: +291 1 126240
Location: P.O. Box 5839
Zone 1 Subzone 01
Nakura Street, House No. 14
Asmara, Eritrea
Fax: +291 1 127350
What we do:

 UNAIDS Country Co-ordinator
Contact person: Pascal Steiner Tel: +291 1 15 15 99
Location: Postal Address: 5 Warsay Avenue
P.O. Box 5366
Asmara, Eritrea
Fax: +291 1 15 16 00
What we do:

 UN Theme Group on HIV/AIDS, Chair
Contact person: Dr Andrew Kosia, WHO Tel: +291 1 15 1613
Location: 5 Warsay Avenue
P.O. Box 5561
Asmara, Eritrea
Fax: +291 1 15 1322
What we do:

Sources: - The Presidents Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)
- The World Bank
- World Health Organization
- United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Country Profiles
- United Nations Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs. 2005. “World Population Prospects: The 2004 Revision.” New York.
- The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)

Treatment Map

Adult HIV Prevalence Rate (%): 2.4%
No. Of People living with HIV/AIDS: 59,000
No. Of HIV Testing & Counseling Sites: n/a
No. Of People in need of ART: 11,000
No. Of People on ART: n/a
No. Of Sites Reportedly Distributing ART: n/a
No. Of People on ART Public Sector: n/a
No. Of People on ART Private Sector: n/a
No. Of People on ART in Non-Governmental Programmes: n/a
No. Of People Expected to be on ART (2006 End): n/a
Front Line Drug Regimen: n/a
*PMTCT Regimen: n/a

HIV/AIDS Fund Disbursements:
Total Funds Disbursed By The Global Fund as of Sept. 2006: US$10,742,543
Total Funds Disbursed By The World Bank Multi-Country HIV/AIDS Programme (MAP) as of Sept. 2006: US$64 million
Total Funds Disbursed By PEPFAR During 2005 Fiscal Year: nil


Demographics (United Nations Population Fund):
Population: 4,401,000
Population aged 15-59: 2,258,000
Urban population: 916,000

Under 5 mortality per 1000 births: 94
Male life expectancy: 58 years
Female life expectancy: 62 years
Combined average life expectancy: 60 years
Combined average life expectancy 1975-1980: 44.9 years

Education (UNESCO, 2004):
Males with secondary education as percentage of secondary school-age youths:
38% (2004 UNESCO Institute for Statistics estimate)
Females with secondary education as percentage of secondary school-age youths:
21% (2004 UNESCO Institute for Statistics estimate)

Literacy rates (UNESCO, 2004):
Percentage of literate males aged 15 or older: n/a
Percentage of literate females aged 15 or older: n/a
Combined literacy rate for aged 15 or older: n/a
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