An urgent call has been made by the Head of Family Health at the Ministry of Health, Doctor Rachel Devi and HIV advocate and woman living with HIV, Rebecca Kubunavanua for expectant mothers and their partners to get tested for HIV.
It has been revealed on fijivillage Straight Talk With Vijay Narayan that many expectant mothers are not going for their clinics after they get pregnant, and when they find out late that they have HIV and have passed HIV onto their child, it may be too late.
Doctor Devi says some women only come to the hospital when they are in labour.
She says everyone in Fiji should be concerned about the new HIV infections in Fiji that has surged by a staggering 260 percent since 2010, making Fiji the second fastest-growing epidemic in the Asia Pacific region.
She says last year, Fiji had 4 new born babies that were born HIV positive.
A detailed analysis of the data reveals that 245 new cases of HIV were diagnosed last year, the highest ever to be recorded in a year, indicating that new HIV infections are on the rise.
It is a 100 percent increase compared to the previous year.
Doctor Devi also confirms that adults constitute 94 percent of the cases last year which is 231 cases and children make up 6 percent which are 14 cases.
Males were the most affected with 61 percent (150 cases), females recorded 36 percent (88 cases), and transgender with 3% (7 cases).
43 percent of the new cases are among individuals aged 20 to 29 years and 28 percent are between 30 to 39 years.
Doctor Devi and Kubunavanua call out on everyone to come forward and get tested as it is free and they can get this done at any Ministry of Health clinic.
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