Malawi has re-introduced its National HIV/AIDS Testing and Counseling (HTC) week aimed at mobilising the public for voluntary HIV testing to know their status from 22 to 27th September.
The Secretary for Health Chris Kang’ombe said on Monday that the government has designated the week in order to allow those people who do not know their status to voluntary go for testing.
“This week is very important to the people of Malawi as well as the nation because it will enable the government to plan for the medication and other benefits for its affected and infected population,” he said.
During the week, he said, all communities are encouraged to access testing and counseling services in all district health facilities, the Christian Health Association of Malawi (CHAM) clinics and that mobile clinics will be going around.
This year’s HTC Week focuses on couples and young people from all over the country particularly those from hard-to-reach areas, he added.
He said children below the age of 13 are encouraged to go for counseling and testing but with the consent from their parents.
Malawi is among countries in sub-Saharan Africa hard hit by the pandemic with over 1million people living with HIV and Aids of which 300,000 are on currently on antiretroviral therapy.