According to the Ethiopian Public Health Institute, the study will be conducted on more than 25,000 adults and children in 395 identified areas across the east African country.
Ebba Abate, Ethiopian Public Health Institute Director-General, told reporters that the assessment, which is the first of its kind to be conducted on HIV/AIDS in the country, envisaged to investigate in detail HIV/AIDS prevention and control activities that have been implemented over the past 15 years.
The assessment mainly aimed to complement the global 90-90-90 HIV treatment goals, which aspires 90 percent of people living with HIV diagnosed, 90 percent of diagnosed people on antiretroviral treatment (ART) and 90 percent of people in treatment with fully suppressed viral load by 2020, it was indicated.
According to Abate, the study would help to identify priority areas of intervention for the realization of the global target as it would enable Ethiopia to figure out the status of HIV/AIDS among its citizens.
Ethiopia is among the 15 countries in Africa selected for the study, which will be conducted jointly by the Ethiopian Public Health Institute, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment and Programs at Columbia University (ICAP), it was noted.
The Ethiopian Anti-HIV/AIDS Associations Coalition has recently expressed its concern that HIV/AIDS intervention and response is presently sluggish in Ethiopia. According to Edlam Gebreselassie, coalition board head, over 54 HIV/AIDS associations were closed over the past few years; while some 348 are facing serious challenges.
There are 720,000 people in Ethiopia living with HIV, of whom 420,000 are receiving antiretroviral treatment, according to the Ethiopian Ministry of Health.
Author: ADDIS ABABA