New HIV infections, deaths increase in Kenya – study

By , K24 Digital
On Thu, 1 Dec, 2022 15:16 | 2 mins read
Kenya records increase in new HIV infections, deaths
HIV/AIDS test kit. PHOTO/Courtesy

For the last decade, Kenya has recorded a steady rise in HIV cases and in 2021 the infections hit 34,540, an increase of 7.3 per cent.

This is according to the World Aids Day report 2022 report dubbed, it is a race against time by the National Syndemic Disease Control Council released on December 1, 2022.

The increase is attributed to the rise of new HIV infections among children, adolescents and younger people where it is reported that a 52 per cent increase was recorded for Kenyans aged 15-29 years as well as the shortage of HIV commodities and funding.

Of the new cases, 70 per cent (20,505) are women and girls where 8 out of 10 new HIV infections occur among adolescent girls and young women aged 15-24.

“Women and girls continue to bear the brunt of the epidemic. They become infected at a much earlier age than men and boys of the same age,” the report shows.

In terms of counties, 10 which include Nairobi, Kisumu, Homabay, Siaya, Migori, Nakuru, Mombasa Kakamega, Kisii and Uasin Gishu accounted for 57 per cent of all new HIV infections that occurred in 2021.

Of the 10, Nairobi county took the lead in new cases followed by three western Kenya regions including Kisumu at 3,118, Homa Bay at 2,696 and Siaya at 2,180.

Besides HIV, other sexually transmitted infections have been on a rising trend, with 14873 pregnant mothers diagnosed with syphilis in 2021 compared to 10,000 in 2018. 

Total AIDS-related deaths in 2021, inclusive of children and adolescents, stood at 22,373, which was an increase from 19, 486 recorded in 2000.

Half of these deaths were recorded in Nairobi, Kisumu, Homabay, Siaya, Migori, Nakuru, Mombasa, Kakamega, Kiambu and Kisii counties.

Kisumu County led with 1,703 Aids-related deaths, followed by Homa Bay with 1589 deaths. Nakuru came third with 1332 deaths, followed closely by Nairobi County with 1300 deaths, and Siaya with 1276 deaths.

In Samburu County, the number of AIDS-related deaths shot up from 55 in 2021 to 205 in 2022.