Nigeria second highest burden of adolescent HIV globally – NACA

The National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA), has revealed that Nigeria has the second highest burden of adolescents living with HIV in the world, as 240,000 adolescents in the country are living with HIV.
The Director-General of the agency, Dr.
Sani Aliyu, made the disclosure at programme tagged “All-In working with adolescents and young people to achieve 90:90:90 in Nigeria,” yesterday in Abuja.
According to Dr.
Aliyu, with this burden, Nigeria is not preventing new infections, enrolling and retaining young people in treatment fast enough, adding that with their strong drive, idealism and fresh ideas, young people can introduce new solutions to the challenges.
He said: “In view of the above, the Nigerian National HIV response led by NACA, with support from UNICEF in partnership with Population Council, has embarked on an adolescent participation initiative that will help to define a framework for engaging adolescents in the AIDS response specifically.
“The work stream on engaging adolescents recognises that adolescents and youths are critical in efforts to end the AIDS epidemic.
By working together with them in AIDS response and across sectors can create a successful pathway to adulthood for young people.” The DG NACA, further urged the private sector to engage in and invest on Adolescents and Young Persons (AYPs), in HIV response, adding that “investing on this segment of the population shall translate into a democratic dividend.” Also speaking, the President, Association of Positive Youths, Mohammed Isa, said so much is missed out when talking about HIV to young people.
He said: “There are so much that is missed out when talking about HIV to young people.
“They need encouragement, access to treatment, talk about their status and discuss openly about their sexual partners.

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