Bulawayo, Zimbabwe – 29 January 2016 – The Ministry of Health and Child Care (MOHCC) will launch the Bulawayo phase of the ground breaking survey, the Zimbabwe Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (ZIMPHIA), on Friday the 29th of January 2016 at the Holiday Inn Hotel. This provincial launch follows the official national launch by the Minister of Health and Child Care Dr. Pagwesese David Parirenyatwa held in Harare on the 18th of September 2015. The Bulawayo ZIMPHIA launch is the fourth successful ZIMPHIA provincial launch after the Mashonaland Central, Matebeleland North and Manicaland provincial launches held between October and December 2015. ZIMPHIA is a nationally representative, population-based HIV impact assessment survey that is expected to run for a period of six months. ZIMPHIA survey data collection started mid October 2015 and has so far covered Mashonaland Central, Matebeleland North Provinces and parts of Manicaland Province. About 6,700 people have been tested for HIV so far. The target is to collect data from about 15,000 households across the country; ZIMPHIA survey teams will visit an estimated 1,288 households in Bulawayo Province.
The survey aims to measure the burden of HIV and the impact of Zimbabwe’s HIV prevention, care and treatment services. The results from the survey will act as a baseline to benchmark progress towards the UNAIDS’ 90-90-90 targets and help to focus programs and resources towards populations at greatest risk for HIV and in most need of services. ZIMPHIA results will also assist to guide future investments in health.
The MOHCC, is leading the implementation of ZIMPHIA in partnership with the National AIDS Council, Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZIMSTAT), Biomedical Research and Training Institute and other international partners i.e., ICAP at Columbia University, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Westat. The primary objectives of ZIMPHIA are to estimate HIV incidence (new HIV infections) at a national level, and to estimate the provincial prevalence of suppressed HIV viral load in a nationally representative sample of adults. ZIMPHIA will also estimate pediatric prevalence of HIV.
“My Ministry is very excited about ZIMPHIA as its results will offer us a platform as policymakers to better understand the relative impact of HIV at population level and additionally provides participants with an opportunity to know their HIV status,” Honourable Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr. Pagwesese David Parirenyatwa said in a statement. He added that it is important that we align our programmes to national policies. “I am happy that ZIMPHIA has been designed to make meaningful contribution to specific results in the ZIMASSET, which is our national guiding blueprint for socio-economic development, said Dr. Parirenyatwa during the ZIMPHIA official National Launch last year in Harare.
Zimbabwe’s success in combatting HIV is the result of a well-coordinated approach to the national response by government and other stakeholders. Both the Zimbabwe and U.S. governments are excited about ZIMPHIA and their continued collaboration in the HIV response in the country. The United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), has provided substantial resources for this survey. Additional resources have been provided by the Government of Zimbabwe and the Global Fund.
“Through PEPFAR, we are committed to continuing our support, towards the implementation of HIV and AIDS activities in Zimbabwe and in particular, its first HIV impact assessment,” the U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission to Zimbabwe, Robert Scott, announced during the ZIMPHIA National Launch last year in Harare. He continued saying, “We believe that ZIMPHIA is one of the ways to attain epidemic control in Zimbabwe as we continue to work towards the goal of reaching an AIDS-free generation.”
ZIMPHIA is a national survey being run by the MOHCC in the interest of the nation and requires the support of everyone. Maximum participation and cooperation by communities and the selected households will ensure the success of the survey. ZIMPHIA field teams carrying MOHCC identification will visit only the randomly selected households in order to invite people to take part in the survey. All men, women, and children in the household are encouraged to participate by responding to survey questions and getting tested.
For more information on ZIMPHIA contact:
- O. Mugurungi, Director of AIDS & TB Unit, MoHCC Email: Mugurungi@gmail.com
- M. Mhangara, Strategic Information Coordinator, AIDS & TB Unit, MoHCC Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Donald Mujiri, National Protocol and Public Relations Manager, MOHCC Email: email@example.com Tel: +263 712867337.
- Rosemary Mucha Muchengeti, Communications Officer – ZIMPHIA Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: +263 712765275
- Nicole Finnemann, Deputy Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section. Email: email@example.com Tel: +263 4 758800-1, Fax: 758802. http://harare.usembassy.gov