Life expectancy in Zimbabwe shoots up, HIV infection drop

Life expectancy in Zimbabwe shoots up, HIV infection drop
Published: 27 December 2017 (1061 Views)
LIFE expectancy in the country has shot up from 37 years to 59 while a significant drop in new HIV infections has been recorded, raising hopes that the country is on course to achieving its ambitious target to manage the pandemic by 2020.

The Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr David Parirenyatwa, said his ministry was working hard as infant mortality and maternal mortality had also significantly dropped while life expectancy shot up.

"Zimbabwe had one of the highest HIV/Aids prevalence rates in Africa, but we worked so hard that we have the highest drop in HIV statistics on the continent to the extent that people from other regions come here to learn how to tackle epidemics such as HIV.

"New infections have dropped drastically.

"The likelihood of an HIV positive mother giving birth to an HIV positive baby was at 40 percent, but because of treatment that we give it's now at 5,4 percent," said Dr Parirenyatwa in an interview last week.

He said the ministry's mantra has always been prevention and this has been adopted by other countries.

"Now I'm being invited all over the world to talk about prevention. Recently I was in Rome after being invited by the Pope to talk about prevention," said the health minister.

He said such significant improvements show that the country's health system is on the road to recovery despite the challenges being faced.

"When you want to see the markers of an improving health system you look at issues like the life expectancy and the prevalence of epidemics such as HIV and Aids. Our life expectancy had fallen to 37 years, but it has shot up to 59 years.

"Although 59 years is low, the fact that it's going up is a huge improvement. Infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate have also come down drastically," said Dr Parirenyatwa.

He said at one point the country was recording 1 100 deaths per 100 000 women who died while giving birth, but the statistics have come down to 614 deaths per 100 000 women dying while giving birth.

"It's still high for me, but the big drop is a marker for a health system that's improving," said Dr Parirenyatwa.

He said it was important for people to realise that in spite of the challenges that the health system was facing, the ministry has worked hard towards protecting people's lives.

"These are the things that we don't recognise here that Zimbabwe is a beacon country in terms of fighting HIV.

"In spite of the challenges that our health system is going through, we should look at the milestones that we have managed to achieve as a country," said Dr Parirenyatwa.

He added that if funds permit the ministry is looking forward to upgrading infrastructure and equipping hospitals and training specialists in the country to continue improving the country's health system.

He said his ministry was a huge organisation with 37 000 employees.

"We have six central hospitals, three in Bulawayo and three in Harare. We have eight provincial hospitals, 63 district hospitals and 47 mission hospitals.

"On top of that, we also have 23 general hospitals and 1 211 health centres. We expect each of these to be working very well and service delivery to be excellent," said Dr Parirenyatwa.


- Herald

 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

Looting soldier shot during protests

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 92 Views

How drug offences can affect your life

by Staff Reporter | 17 January 2019 | 22 Views

Zimbabweans march to ANC headquaters over Mnangagwa

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 46 Views

Mnangagwa meets Belarus President

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 21 Views

Who used the extra 480 million litres of fuel the last six months?'

by Staff rpeorter | 17 January 2019 | 37 Views

Mnangagwa signs 8 MOUs in Belarus

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 36 Views

Govt meets transporters over fares

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 36 Views

Military in civilian life: lessons from the fall of Mugabe

by The Source News Agency | 17 January 2019 | 23 Views

'Zimbabwe potential hub for industrial development in Africa'

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 29 Views

ZRP heightens crackdown against criminals

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 18 Views

Zimbabwe counts huge costs of stay-away

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 14 Views

Zesa dismisses social media messages

by Staff rpeorter | 17 January 2019 | 27 Views

Gun-wielding soldiers assault Daily news staff

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 20 Views

Mnangagwa's re-engagement efforts with Western countries is dead

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 30 Views

Police should probe vandalism, looting

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 26 Views

Military door-to-door raids slammed

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 19 Views

Trial of 'Shut-down' protesters fast-tracked

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 25 Views

'Internet shutdown draconian'

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 27 Views

MDC Alliance's Chibaya remanded in custody

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 13 Views

How to win at slots? Top slot tips & tricks

by Staff Reporter | 17 January 2019 | 45 Views

Stay away: A manifestation of the MDC's violence DNA

by Nobleman Runyanga | 17 January 2019 | 81 Views

Kirsty Coventry has not resigned from ministry

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 92 Views

Mnangagwa and Gen Chiwenga responsible for lootings, shootings and terrorism

by Dr Nkululeko Sibanda (Presidential Spokesperson) | 17 January 2019 | 112 Views

A tale of a school teacher

by Virimayi Chidembo | 17 January 2019 | 78 Views

My encounter with the rowdy protestors

by Betty Gatsi | 17 January 2019 | 50 Views

Price of bread now $6

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 104 Views

The unleashing of army to descend on demonstrators was uncalled for

by Leonard Koni | 17 January 2019 | 46 Views

How Facebook and Whatsapp fuelled chaos and confusion in Zimbabwe

by Dr Masimba Mavaza | 17 January 2019 | 48 Views

Mnangagwa pleased with Putin meeting

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 127 Views

Mnangagwa opens consulate in Belarus

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 139 Views

MDC perpetrating violence, violating human rights

by Anesu Pedzisayi | 17 January 2019 | 131 Views

3 Religious Sites to Visit When in Israel

by Staff Reporter | 17 January 2019 | 87 Views

BREAKING: Evan Mawarire charged with treason

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 226 Views

'100 men abaducted in Matabeland during protests'

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 133 Views

Army continues terror as Bulawayo is shutdown

by Mandla Ndlovu | 17 January 2019 | 291 Views

Here's what motorists are paying for fuel around the world

by wheels24 | 17 January 2019 | 228 Views

Bond notes and their possible long-term legacy

by Staff reporter | 17 January 2019 | 154 Views