|Tuesday, 10 July 2012 16:01|
BULAWAYO has been hit by a severe shortage of Anti-Retroviral (ARV) drugs amid reports that 1 090 children are dying in the country every week from HIV and Aids.
It has also emerged that 15 000 children are infected with the disease every year. The shortage of drugs has seen HIV patients on Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART) being forced to share the medication.
The patients are allocated available stocks in a bid to satisfy the demand with those on the same stage of medication splitting the available allocation among them equally.
Bulawayo City Council director of health services Dr Zanele Hwalima could not readily shed more light on the matter, but confirmed that the patients were sharing ARVs.
“Patients have to share ARVs if the stocks are inadequate while awaiting next allocation from the Government,” said Dr Hwalima.
The local authority’s health, housing and education committee chaired by Ward 29 councillor Monica Lubimbi also noted the shortage of the life prolonging drugs with concern.
Due to drug shortages, provision of ARV to 1.3 million people living with HIV and Aids in Zimbabwe could be crippled. Declining donor funding for HIV and Aids had worsened the situation.