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International News

Estimate of HIV Prevalence in Ethiopia 6.6 Percent

January 3, 2003

The fourth edition of "AIDS in Ethiopia," an update on the country's HIV/AIDS epidemic, put Ethiopia's HIV prevalence at 6.6 percent for 2001, down from 7.3 percent, the figure presented in the report's third edition. The slight decrease does not mean Ethiopia's epidemic is declining, cautions the fourth edition's executive summary. Urban HIV prevalence continues to be high, and the highest prevalence of HIV occurs in 15- to 24-year-olds, representing recent infections.

HIV/AIDS Resource Center Ethiopia, the country's first such center, was inaugurated recently in Addis Ababa. The center includes services such as a comprehensive multi-media reference collection, high-speed computer terminals with Internet access, audiovisual equipment, and databases of local and international HIV/AIDS organizations and funding opportunities. Access to accurate, current information is key to halting the spread of the virus, according to Dr. Tadesse Wuhib, director of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Ethiopia. "Young people and adults need to be educated and informed about HIV/AIDS so that they can protect themselves and care for those who are infected or affected," he said.

The center is free to users affiliated with government agencies, media organizations or NGOs working on HIV/AIDS issues. Once the center is fully operational, other regional sites, networked through the main resource center in Addis Ababa, may be opened. Plans also call for an expanded audiovisual unit, additional databases, and a national HIV/AIDS hotline.

Ethiopia's HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control Office, in collaboration with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Communication Program (CCP), Analytical Sciences Inc. and CDC established the center. A total of $1.5 million in funding is provided through a five-year cooperative agreement between CCP and CDC. Organizers disclosed that an additional $150,000 would be available in year one for development of voluntary counseling and testing materials. In years one and two, $245,000 is earmarked for information technology and database development.

Back to other CDC news for January 3, 2003

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Adapted from:
Africa News Service
12.13.02; Addis Tribune

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
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