70,000 babies infected with HIV Yearly in NIgeria


I was dumbfounded when I read this article below. How can a country like Niger have over 70,000 babies infected with HIV annually? Is it because we have a shortage of healthcare professionals to educate our citizens? I believe the reason is that our people do not take this disease serious. We think it is a myth and it could never affect us. Please go get tested. AIDS IS REAL. Always put the “cap” on Biko. If we are not careful we will have an epidemic on our hands.  

The Federal Government, Monday, in Abuja, expressed concern over the increase in the spread of HIV/AIDS, with a revelation that no fewer than 70,000 babies were born annually with the disease in the country.

Director-General of National Agency for the Control of HIV/AIDS, NACA, Professor John Idoko, who said this at a briefing to mark World AIDS Day in Abuja, stated that the ratio of prevalence was higher in women with about 1.72 million women living with the disease.He hinged the prevalence of the disease in women on inequality in status with men.

Idoko said: “The prevalence rate of HIV in Nigeria has reduced from 4.6 per cent (2008) to 4.1 per cent in 2010, according to the latest sentinel survey. There is evidence supported by the United Nations that HIV is stabilising in some countries including Nigeria.

“While we have noticed a reduction in HIV prevalence in Nigeria, the high rate in some states is still a source of concern to the National HIV response. We will try to make testing available for every pregnant woman because it is not acceptable that 60,000 to 70,000 children are born HIV-positive annually.

“More women (about 1.72 million) than men are living with HIV in the country as a result of inequity in the social, political and economic status of women in Africa in general and in Nigeria in particular.”

Source: Vanguardngr

Image: Flickr





  1. The fact that we have a high rate of vertical transmission of HIV I.e from mother to child speaks to the poor quality of prenatal/pregnancy care in Nigeria. In the U.S every pregnant woman is offered and encouraged to get an HIV test. And if she opts out, it is noted that she declined testing. Every HIV positive woman is treated with antiretrovivals in pregnancy with the goal of achieving undetectable levels of the virus and they also receive AZT when they come to the hospital in labor. Furthermore the infant is treated after delivery and tested for HIV for up until 6 months of age. The WHO recommends that HIV testing and subsequent ART treatment be part of routine pregnancy care in developing countries. But only a country that cares for its women at baseline, can care for its pregnant women. And I am sorry to say that I do not believe that women’s health or rights is a priority in Nigeria, and this is one of the evidences of this.

  2. Im not even surprised…..
    About 9 years ago i told my cousin back home that most people in Nigeria are ignorant about the disease and the fact that the population is massive makes it even worse……
    well, 9 years later the stats say it all. F
    For every child with HIV we have potentially two adults with the disease. Do the math….
    Major impact on the future genaration.
    God provide us with leaders that can manage this and God bless us all…..

  3. @Deebs My sister/brother you are comparing the US to Nigeria in terms of health care. How long have you been out of the country or do you live in your own dream world? Please. Consider comparisons to Uganda, Ghana and Tunisia first. Nigeria’s health care system is virtually non existent the government doesn’t care, you should know that. I tell you what why don’t we all put the matter to prayer. Surely that would save these poor babies and their parents.

    • My point exactly Nelson, This problem speaks to the fact that Nigeria's healthcare system is completely disfunctional. Believe me, I have been back to my country, worked in hospitals there and spent a lot of time pondering the problem withthe healthacare systems. The problems are multi-dimensional spanning from poor management of the individuals hospitals, to problems with healthcare delivery and access to available care. You know a situation is dismal when you have AZT going bad on shelves and at the same time have 70,000 babies born with HIV every year… I agree with you Nelson, and that was the exact point was making in my prior statement.

  4. @Deebs It truly saddens me that AZT is going bad on shelves when people are dying of what now is a chronic disease, if treated properly. It may interest you to know that the latest budget for health is the equivalent of $1.8BN. A drop in the ocean. I felt so guilty for some reason, as I wrote this, I sought out a malaria charity and made a donation. Feel a lot better now. I hope the characters that call themselves leaders actually start leading.