States With The Highest HIV Rate In Nigeria: With about 195 Countries in the world across seven continents like South America, Asia, North America, Europe, Antarctica, oceania and ofcourse Africa. We would narrow down to the African continent and then to Nigeria, for the purpose of this article. Africa is one of the most populous continent in the world and as a matter of fact, Africa seem to be competing with Asia in terms of population. The African continent is one of the richest continent in the world in the area of cultural heritage.
With about 54 Countries in Africa, Nigeria remains the largest country in population. It used to be the biggest in economy however, in recent time, it seem to have been slacking. In terms of infrastructural development and commercial activities in the country, the rate of growth has also been recorded to be low as a result of governance and inadequacies in areas of management, creation of industries and enabling environment for small businesses and startups to grow.
Political stiff-neck and bureaucracy has also been some of the major problems. The country’s population has been considered to pose serious challange in managing especially in the area of social infrastructure, health and regularization of standard of living. There is high level of poverty and health challenge.
The deficit in the health sector has gone a long way in increasing the spread of virus diseases and morality rate in the country. The individual perspective is equally not left out as people take uncalculated health risks by engaing in health threatening activities. One of the major health issue in Nigeria is the HIV virus which is an age-long virus across the globe however, the Nigerian society, unlike in more developed countries, has been quite reluctant in taking precautionary measures to prevent the contraction and spread of the virus. Nigeria has about 36 States of the the federation and a federal capital territory, lets take a look at some of the States in Nigeria with high level of HIV.
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Top 10 States With The Highest HIV Rate In Nigeria
1. AKWA IBOM: 5.5% A cording to the Nigerian HIV/AIDs Indicator and Impact Survey (NAIIS) it has been shown that Akwa Ibom State has the highest prevalence case of HIV in Nigeria. According to the result, there is an indication that about 5.5 per cent of the people living with the Virus in the country are in Akwa Ibom State.
This is quite a significant number and quite a challenge to the health sector index and the country in general. This brings the State to the top of the table as the leading state with more HIV patients in Nigeria.
2. BENUE 5.3%: The State is located in the north-central part of the country. According to the Benue State Ministry of Health and Human Services, the placement of over 188,000 persons living with HIV/AIDs on treatment successfully has helped to drop the rate of carriers and spread of the dreadful virus.
According to report, the prevalent rate of the virus in the State has been able to reduce drastically. The state has undoubtedly been shortlisted as one of the States with most HIV rate in Nigeria.
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3. RIVERS 3.8%: River State is one of the largest State in the South-South Region of the country and one of the major commercial hub of the country as well. With it seemingly large population index, no fewer than 4,746 people are HIV positive in area, especially the Ogoni area of Rivers State which is the heart of the oil producing State.
These patients has been registered by the Rivers State Agency on the Control of HIV\AIDS, RIVSACA, and are being looked after at the resource centre in Bori General Hospital, Khana Local Government Area of the State. According to the Agency, about 99 per cent of the people living with the virus are children and there is the speculation that the figure is expected to increase as more people are being registered. This brings the State as one of the most infected State.
4. TARABA 2.9%: Taraba is situated in the heart of the northern region of the country with jalingo as it’s capital. The state has been recorded to have over 36,000 people who are confirmed to be living with HIV/AIDS. This has been a major challenge for the State and a weight on the health sector trying to contain the spread and sustain the infected patients.
The State government has, in recent time, expressed its commitment to eliminate the virus by 2030 and promised to work vigorously towards achieving it. This was recorded to have been made known at the weekly review performance of the implementation Partners working across HIV, tuberculosis and orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) in the State. To this end, the statistics index on the virus prevalence shows that Taraba is one of the States in Nigeria with high rate of infected persons.
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5. ANAMBRA 2.4%: The main commercial hub of the Southeast is also included in the list of states with prevalence rate of the virus. According to the government report, the State has recorded the HIV prevalence in the State and pegged at 2.2%. Although in the year 2020, less than 30% of pregnant women were tested for the virus and even less than a quarter of such women living with the virus was able to access antiretroviral drugs and therapy.
The recent report shows that there has been an upsurge as there was a 73% increase in the estimated number of new cases of HIV infection among children in the state between 2015 to 2020. The State has also shown commitment to fight vertical transmission of the infection in the State.
6. ABIA 2.1%: The giant of the Southeast, Abia State, is one of the major States in Nigeria that has experienced an increased infection rate. It has been ranked as the state with the sixth highest HIV prevalence in the country.
Considering it’s population, Abia has about 58,341 Poeple Livi g with HIV (PLWHIV) in the country. It has also registered it’s concerns and challenges in managing the situation in other to prevent wide spread and provide adequate medical care for the infected patients. It is quite optimistic about achieving a positive result.
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7. CROSS RIVER 2.0%: Criss River State is another giant in the South-South Region of Nigeria. A key player in the oil production. It has quite a number of population within the State and one of the most flourishing States in Nigeria. It is often referred to as the nearest State in Nigeria.
Notwithstanding the above, it has also been recorded by the Chairman, Cross River Technical Working Group, Dr MacFarlane Eja, that the state has experienced tremendous upsurge in the infection rate which has led to the call for a declaration of a state of emergency following the lack of HIV test kits. He has also confirmed that the issue is a public health emergency situation.
8. ENUGU 2.0%: Enugu State is the Capital of the Southeast, it is one of the best states in the country with very hospitable people and environment. The State Agency for the Control of AIDS (ENSACA) has disclosed in recent time that the number of person living with the HIV virus has met a reduction from 5.1 per cent to 4.9 per cent in the state.
This was affirmed by the Executive Secretary of ENSACA, Dr Uche Agu, who also noted that the state has been able to record significant progress in reducing HIV/AIDS prevalence in the State. He went further to highlight some of the challenges facing the state in combating the virus which is the insufficiency of funds and nonavailability of drugs for the registered patients.
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9. NASSARAWA 2.0%: One of the developing States in the Northern part of the country, Nassarawa State is also one of the States in Nigeria with a high rate of HIV prevalence. This has been confirmed by the State ministry of health.
Based on the Nasarawa SURGE project that commenced in May 2019 which was in response to the Nigeria HIV/AIDS Impact and Indicator Survey (NAIIS), the prevalence rate of the virus in the State was placed at 2.0%. this brings the number to an estimated number of 23,306 people to be living with HIV in the state and this patients are in need of viral suppression drugs. The SURGE project was fully funded by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Nassarawa State is one of the States with high rate of HIV in Nigeria.
10. BAYELSA 1.9%: Bayelsa is also a State in the South-South Region of the country with a flourishing economy. It is also one of the states that are quite occupational in Agriculture and small-scale production. According to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), its 2019 National AIDS Survey reveals that Bayelsa State is one of the States with a high rate of the virus.
Based on the survey, the State has an HIV prevalence of about 1.9 per cent. This brings to fore that about 30,000 people in the state are living with HIV. This report was also attested to by the Team Lead of HIV Treatment and Care, Dolapo Ogundehin.
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Conclusively, The HIV virus is a type that weakens the immune system and can result in death. It is contracted through blood transfusion, sexual intercourse and other means that has to do with blood transmission. It has no known cure at the moment but has anti-retroviral drugs that is believed (empirically) to suppress the virus while the carrier continues to live a normal and healthy life for white a long time.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.