According to a report in Avert, in 2011 more than 10% of Malawi’s 15.9 million people were living with HIV and AIDS, which was also the leading cause of death in the country.

Since then, the Malawi government has taken a number of positive steps to fight HIV. It now has a large number of initiatives actively seeking to minimise the spread. These include:

  • Expanding voluntary HIV testing and counselling (HCT/ VCT)
  • Prevention of mother-to-child transmission services
  • Condom promotion and distribution
  • Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision (VMMC)
  • Blood safety measures
  • Mass media campaigns
  • Life Skills Education (LSE) for young people.

Using mHealth is the latest initiative to help combat HIV in the country. Airtel Malawi and UNAIDS has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to develop a HIV app. ITWEB Africa has the full report. The app will enable people living with HIV and AIDS in the country to access and share information about their medication. Airtel Malawi managing director, Heiko Schlittke, believes that “this mobile phone application will escalate the power of mobile technology in a bid to help reverse the HIV and AIDS crisis in Malawi by reaching out as many infected people as possible.”

The UNAIDS country director for Malawi, Amakobe Sande, said the app would enable those affected and infected with the virus to access information about supplies of medication as well as experiences at healthcare points across the country. We hope that the mHealth app together with the ground work the government has already done will help to drastically reduce the spread of the disease.

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