'Stigma hinders fight against HIV'

MUTARE - An organisation involved in the fight against HIV and Aids has said stigma, discrimination and the country’s bad laws are hindering efforts to end the epidemic.

Speaking at an HIV and Aids awareness campaign, Southern Africa Aids Information and Dissemination Service (Safaids) training and advocacy programme coordinator Adolf Mavheneke said in order for the country to effectively fight the epidemic, it has to first deal with stigma and discrimination issues.

The awareness campaign, held at Murambinda Growth Point, was hosted with the assistance of the Zimbabwe National Network for People living with HIV (ZNNP+), National Aids Council (NAC) and the Health ministry.

“HIV and Aids stigma is still a reality. It’s still shockingly rampant and we cannot stop HIV and Aids unless we end stigma. It’s keeping most people away from accessing services.

“HIV can only be stopped if people feel free to access services without being labelled as is the case presently,” Mavheneke said.

He further said stigma and discrimination are a violation of people’s constitutional rights as provided for in Section 56 of the Constitution.

The Safaids official said a recent study by ZNNP+ revealed shocking information that some people still kept kitchen utensils used by people living with HIV and Aids separately for fear of contracting the virus.

ZNNP+ communications and advocacy officer Edmore Mutimodyo said 65 percent of people contacted in the study done in 32 districts are experiencing stigma and discrimination with 31,2 percent being verbally insulted, 21 percent suffering social exclusion, 19 percent experiencing physical abuse, the other 15 percent enduring discrimination from partners, while 13,1 percent were denied accommodation, 12,1 percent denied work opportunities and 10,6 percent were also excluded from religious activities.

Mutimodyo said churches, families, schools and workplaces were the worst places for people living with HIV and Aids.

Health ministry district health promotion officer for Buhera Innocent Chamusingarevi said stigma and discrimination is accompanied by psychological distress which affects drug efficacy.

Chamusingarevi said drugs worked best when the immune system is not being run down by stress.

“Stigma and accompanying stress will affect the effectiveness of the drugs so let us help all accept this disease and support each other because no one is immune from contracting the disease” Chamusingarevi said.

He said his office had to intervene in cases when children had stopped taking their drugs in the face of sustained harassment over their status.

Comments (5)

This is real take it serious, who will believe that a herbal can cure six years HIV in my body, i never believe that this will work i have spend a lot when getting drugs from the hospital to keep me healthy, what i was waiting for is death because i was broke, one day i hard about this great man who is well know of HIV and cancer cure, i decided to email him, unknowingly to me that this will be the end of the HIV aids in my body, he prepare the herb for me, and give me instruction on how to take it, at the end of the two week, he told me to go to the hospital for a check up, and i went, surprisingly after the test the doctor confirm me negative, i thought it was a joke, i went to other hospital was also negative, then i took my friend who was also HIV positive to the Dr, after the treatment she was also confirm negative . He also have the herb to cure cancer please i want every one with this virus to be free, that is why am dropping his email address, dr.aromospelltemple@gmail.com and his contact +2347064693371 do email him he is a great man. the government is also interested in this DR, thank you for saving my life, and I promise I will always testify for your good work add him now on whatsapp +2347064693371

precious - 11 April 2016

contact markzuk via markzuk46@gmail.com and be free from hiv and other related virus.

markzuk - 7 May 2016

contact markzuk on markzuk46@gmail.com and be free from hiv and other related virus

markzuk - 7 May 2016


JOE HELLEN - 3 August 2016

how i get my HIV disease cured with help of dr okosodo you can also him through his email.drokosodopowerfulhome@gmail.com

carolina - 26 September 2016

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.