Thirty years after the appearance of the first cases of AIDS, the prevention, the diagnosis and the treatment are a fight of every day in Mozambique. In spite of overhangs and efforts to check the distribution of the virus, Mozambique counts among countries the most deprived and the most touched by the HIV/AIDS.
About 12 % of the population of Mozambique is affected by the AIDS, according to a study carried out in 2009 by the Ministry of Health – the first official study realized in this country on prevalency of the AIDS. More than 5 % of the inhabitants is so affected by the virus. The study also underlines that the women are the most touched with 13,1 % of them, compared with the 9,2 % rate noticed at the men from 15 to 49 years old. In the urban zones, prevalency of the AIDS exceeds the 15 %. And among the encircled women, 18 % are got by the virus.
The access to the antiretroviral treatment stays a major problem. Mozambique is also one of country where it still remains a lot to make to take care set those who need care and medicines.
RFI contacted Gaspar Sitefane, national executive director of the MONASO – a mozambican NGO which coordinates the actions of 1 400 organizations of the civil society of fight against AIDS, scattered in all the provinces of the country.
Gaspar Sitefane recognizes ” that there are today more persons who are put under antiretroviral treatment but the number of patients who would need it to stay alive and who have no access there amounts to hundreds of thousands “. It turns out that the prevention also consists in informing people and in making them become aware that they can be looked after, live longer healthy if they follow a treatment, all the more if they are detected early. Only here is: all have there effectively no access. For Gaspar Sitefane, ” it is there about one of the biggest challenges of leading. “
The community basic organizations meet a great deal of problems to reach a financing which allows them to develop their actions of fight against AIDS. Today, and because prevalency of the AIDS is the strongest in the South of Mozambique, funds granted by most of the donors are all concentrated in the south region of the country, to the detriment of the regions of the center and the North where the populations are so abandoned. To be looked, these persons are obliged to move, sometimes on long distances, sometimes every 15 days, what engenders additional spending.
Besides and what deteriorates even more the situation, it is that most of the funds intended for the fight against AIDS and for the health generally, result from international financiers. These funds not only tend to decrease but the mozambicain government reduced, of half, the budget health itself which is spent from 14 to 7 %. These financial reductions provoked at once frequent shortages of stock of medicines a situation which deteriorated during the last twelve months.
They are 16,6 millions in the world among which 90 % in Africa. The best provided the others are taken care by exceeded grandmothers, are more or less absorbed in distant families. Many meet alone.
Mozambique counts at present 1,8 million orphans from whom the parents died, victims of the HIV/AIDS. 20 000 of them meet heads of the family in charge of their brothers, younger, and obliged to abandon the school. It is what indicated, on Wednesday, June 1st, the ministry of the Woman and Social action of Mozambique, during the international day of the child.
Most of the children who so lost their parents always require of a financial but also social support. The children who live in villages are often helped by the inhabitants of their community but those who live in the suburbs know of more great difficulties of social integration and abandoned in their fate.
Gaspar Sitefane, of the MONASO, is formal: it is necessary to bet on the prevention, on the treatment but also on the nutrition. ” We speak about persons who for the great majority are poor. When they follow the antiretroviral treatment and when they take medicines, what takes place very often, it is that they have no means to take a meal. We know that they are strong medicines, difficult to support, especially at the beginning of the treatment. If moreover, we have the empty stomach, certain persons loose courage and abandon “.
According to the last figures supplied by the UNAIDS in its last annual report, published in 2010 and concerning 2009, sub-Saharan Africa is the region most hard touched with 22,5 million infected persons that is 67 % of all the persons living with the HIV in the world (5 % on average of the African population), and more than two thirds of the deaths.
” The AIDS was the major epidemic of the XXth century and stays that of the XXIth “, raises Pr Jean-François Delfaissy, of the Agency of researches on the AIDS.
Translated: Gael SORO. National Focal Point/ Ivory Coast