Rwanda: Efforts to Contain HIV/AIDS Among Teens Slacken
February 16, 2010
Rwandan health officials recently launched a nationwide HIV campaign aimed at curbing risky sexual behavior among teens. HIV prevalence is 1 percent among people ages 15-24, said Dr. Anitha Asimwe, executive secretary of the National AIDS Control Commission. However, just 10 percent of young sexually active Rwandans say they use condoms, according to a 2000 study.
Many teens find it difficult to address HIV with their sex partners, say health experts. In 2008, "David" went in for HIV/STD testing after coming down with shingles, skin diseases, and pneumonia. After he was diagnosed with HIV, which he tried "ignoring," David began having unprotected sex with a new girlfriend. "Raising the issue of your HIV status sometimes contributes to a breakdown in mutual confidence and friendship," said the 18-year-old. "After several times having unprotected sex, I decided to tell her that I had AIDS." David's girlfriend has since left him.
Inter Press Service
02.13.2010; Aimable Twahirwa
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.