Garissa County has no single case of HIV prevalence, a survey by Kenya Population-Based HIV Impact Assessment (KENPHIA) 2018 has revealed.
“Garissa had no HIV-positive persons identified, thus is represented as having an HIV prevalence <0.1 per cent,” the report by KENPHIA read.
KENPHIA was launched in 2018 by Health CS Sicily Kariuki for the Ministry to find the state of HIV epidemic and the impact of efforts towards its control. It provides first-hand insights on the progress made so far as well as identify and quantify the existing gaps.
The study conducted between June 2018 and February 2019 shows that North Eastern region has the least number of HIV prevalence cases.
While Garissa records no HIV prevalence case, Wajir and Mandera both recorded 0.2 per cent while Marsabit and Isiolo recorded 1.2 and 2.2 per cent respectively.
The study found out that HIV prevalence varied across the country with the Nyanza region recording the highest figures.
Homa Bay is the leading county in Kenya with 19.6 per cent HIV prevalence cases followed closely by Kisumu at 17.5 per cent and Siaya at 15.3 per cent. Migori has 13 per cent.
Nairobi is at 3.8 per cent, Mombasa 5.6 per cent, Uasin Gishu 5.5 per cent, Turkana 6.8 per cent and Busia 9.9 per cent.
According to KENPHIA, the national HIV prevalence among adults stands at 4.9 per cent which translates to 1.3 million adults living with HIV in Kenya.
“The HIV prevalence was at 4.7 per cent in urban and 5.0 per cent in rural areas,” KENPHIA stated.
The survey also revealed there are twice as many women as men living with HIV in Kenya.
“There were marked differences in HIV prevalence between women and men, which was twice as high among women at 6.6 per cent compared to men at 3.1 per cent.”
It added: “For both sexes combined, HIV prevalence peaked among adults aged 45-49 years. However, among adults, HIV prevalence was consistently higher among women than men across all the age groups”.
However, the new HIV infections have reduced to 0.14 per cent per year, 0.15 per cent among women and 0.13 per cent among men.
KENPHIA also notes that HIV prevalence among children was 0.7 per cent which translates to approximately 139,000 children living with HIV in Kenya.
“There was no difference between girls and boys: HIV prevalence was 0.7 per cent among girls and 0.8 per cent among boys,” the report notes.
The KENPHIA survey was conducted across the 47 counties of Kenya. A total of 33,071 adolescents and adults were interviewed, and 35,610 adults and children gave blood samples.