Health News Press

Alarming Rise in HIV Prevalence in Lira City Ranking 6th in the Country.

In the ongoing battle against HIV/AIDS in Uganda, the latest report by the Uganda Aids Commission has unveiled a concerning surge in HIV prevalence, with Lira City ranking 6th in the country and 1st in Lango Sub region.

According to the Household Child Impact Assessment Report released in 2021, Lira City HIV prevalence in he city prevalence rate is 12.1%, surpassing the national average of 5.1%. This revelation has prompted local leaders and health officials to intensify efforts in tackling the epidemic. This constitutes to over 19,600 individuals in Lira City are living with the virus. This places the city in a precarious position, highlighting the need for immediate intervention and public health strategies.

Expressing disappointment, local leaders engaged with the Uganda Aids Commission during a recent meeting, shedding light on key factors contributing to the high prevalence in the region. Addressing these factors is deemed crucial in reversing the city’s rankings and combating the epidemic effectively.

The Lira City East Mayor, George Okello Ayo calls for agent action in sensitizing the communities on safe sex as it is believed as on of the main cause of the rising cases in the city. He also called upon community leaders to pay attention to markets that operates even late in the night citing that it has sparked infections among the teenagers.

Dr. Hillary Okello, the HIV focal point person in Lira City, emphasized the alarming rate of new infections, revealing that 3 out of every 10 individuals tested are turning out to be HIV positive. Despite the grim statistics, Dr. Okello acknowledged the positive trend of increasing numbers of people taking responsibility for their health by enrolling in medication programs.

Dr. Okello also urge the public to refrain from stigmatizing those living with HIV as it hinders the collective efforts to address the epidemic.

The Uganda Aids Commission coordinator, Tom Ebii, operating under the office of the president, underscored the need to integrate HIV awareness campaigns into various government programs such as the Presidential Development Model (PDM) and the Empowerment Scheme (Emmyoga). This, he believes, will foster a more comprehensive approach to HIV prevention and support.

Uganda, currently grappling with over 14,000 reported cases of HIV, faces a daunting challenge in curbing the spread of the virus. The latest rankings place Fort Portal City at the top with a prevalence rate of 17.8%, followed by Mbarara at 14.4%, Soroti City at 13.3%, Kyeotera at 13.2%, Kalanga at 12.8%, and Lira City at 12.1%.

As efforts intensify to address the escalating HIV prevalence, health officials and community leaders stress the importance of practicing safe sex, including consistent condom use during intercourse, as a fundamental measure in reducing transmission rates. The collective commitment of both individuals and the government is imperative to achieving the ambitious goal of ending HIV in Uganda by 2030.



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