HIV testing serves as an entry point to HIV prevention, care and treatment programs.
In late 2015, the country adopted the UNAIDS 90-90-90 Global Fast Track targets aimed at ensuring that by 2020:
- 90% of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status;
- 90% of all people diagnosed HIV positive will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy; and
- 90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression.
As part of this framework, the MOHCC has committed to not only increasing testing coverage for the general population, but prioritizing strategies and testing initiatives that are more likely to identify those living with undiagnosed HIV.
Total testing targets
In order to achieve the goal of identifying 90% of PLHIV, Zimbabwe will need to test 2 million paediatrics and 10,5 million adolescents and adults by 2020.
Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision (VMMC)
Randomized control trials in Kenya, Uganda and South Africaprovided compelling evidence that voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) reduces the risk of female-to-male sexual transmission of HIV through heterosexual intercourse by up to 60%. Following this compelling evidence in March 2007, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) recommended the incorporation of VMMC as part of a comprehensive HIV prevention package in countries with a generalized HIV epidemic and low rates of male circumcision (MC). Zimbabwe, due to its high HIV prevalence (approximately 15% then), and a low male circumcision prevalence rate (approximately 9% then), was one of the 14 countries in Eastern and Southern Africa that was prioritized for scale-up of VMMC.
Zimbabwe VMMC Strategic Goal
Zimbabwe’s strategic goal for VMMC is “to contribute to the reduction of HIV incidence by scaling up VMMC to reach 80% of HIV negative men between 13-29 years, by 2017.”