Zambia's first lady rues slow decline in new HIV infections among young people

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LUSAKA, Feb. 18 (Xinhua) -- Zambia's First Lady Esther Lungu on Thursday expressed concern at the slow decline in new HIV infections among young people in the country.

The Zambian first lady said there was need to upscale programs and awareness on HIV/AIDS among the youth in the country in order to address the situation.

In remarks delivered during a Virtual National Adolescent and Youth HIV Surge 2021 Indaba, the Zambian first lady attributed the slow pace of the decline in new infections among young people to low comprehensive knowledge among young people aged between 15 and 19 years.

The meeting was held under the theme, "Adolescents Voices for HIV".

According to her, there was a need for the young people to commit themselves to end new infections, adding that there has been a shift in the pandemic in the last five years with about two out of five new infections being in young people.

"We need enhanced access to HIV services as well as comprehensive knowledge about the epidemic in order for the youth to be well equipped to effectively fight the disease," she said.

Health Minister Jonas Chanda said stigma and discrimination for people living with HIV/AIDS were still a reality in the country which must be fought.

The Zambian minister however said the country has recorded remarkable progress in HIV/AIDS response and has continued to invest in health care in order to enhance access to quality services. Enditem

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