World AIDS day: risks still exist

Rwanda, yesterday, joined other countries to mark the World AIDS day. At the national level, the Day was celebrated at Amahoro Stadium, under the theme- “youth, let us join efforts in protecting overselves and others against HIV for a brighter future.”

Rwanda, yesterday, joined other countries to mark the World AIDS day. At the national level, the Day was celebrated at Amahoro Stadium, under the theme- “youth, let us join efforts in protecting overselves and others against HIV for a brighter future.”

Statistics from the Rwanda Biomedical Centre (RBC), indicate that HIV prevalence among the youth aged 15-24 years is estimated at 1,0 percent. 

Globally, young people make up the biggest segment of the population but sadly, this group is the most vulnerable to HIV infection. According to the World Health Organization, 50% of HIV transmission takes place among those aged between 15-24 years and about 5000-6000 young people become infected every day, worldwide.

One of Rwanda’s biggest assets is the youth. They are key to the sustainable growth and development of the country and we risk losing out on benefiting from their potential unless they are protected against this deadly disease.

Rwanda has put in place mechanisms to reduce the spread of the disease. The government through the Ministry of Health has made it possible for those infected to access Antiretroviral (URV) treatment.

The latest report by the Joint United Nations Program on AIDS (UNAIDS) indicates that Rwanda is one of the three African countries that have achieved universal access to Antiretroviral (ARV) treatment.

However, despite the success in controlling the spread of the virus in the country, there is still a long way to go, especially in educating the youth to stay safe.

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