Between January and February, at least 98 females ages 10 to 19 were infected with HIV, according to the Kenya Ministry of Health.
Furthermore, Kenya’s Health PS Susan Mochache stated that during the two months, 45,724 incidents of adolescent pregnancies were documented, as well as 2,196 occurrences of sexual and gender-based violence among those aged 12-17.
According to Ms Mochache, an attempt has been made in recent years to “stop the triple threat” that many young girls face.
The PS spoke at the Coast during a four-day national debate with county commissioners on their role in managing HIV, teen pregnancies, and gender-based violence.
“Kenya made remarkable gains toward eradicating AIDS as a public health hazard by working collaboratively with our partners,” the PS added.
Between 2013 and 2021, HIV intervention programmes resulted in a 67% reduction in yearly AIDS-related fatalities, according to Mochache.
“This good result represents a rise of 83 percent in the number of HIV-positive patients receiving life-saving antiretroviral medication, from 600,000 in 2013 to 1.2 million in 2021,” she noted.
The PS, on the other hand, was concerned about the high rate of sexual and gender-based violence, which has resulted in many women and Young females contracting HIV while also depriving them of their dignity.
In 2021, 12,520 instances of SGBV were reported, according to Mochache.
“We were able to deliver HIV prevention services to 4,664 young survivors,” says the researcher. Sadly, 53 of them had contracted HIV,” she noted.
In the same year, adolescent moms aged 10 to 19 made about 21% of all prenatal care visits. Worse, 23,279 females aged 10-14 were identified as presenting pregnancies at health institutions.
“Kenya has a primarily young population, with 67 percent of the population under the age of 29.” We won’t be able to foster their potential if we continue to allow teenage girls’ education to be disrupted,” the PS stated.
As Kenya starts on a path to ensuring that every Kenyan has access to high-quality health care, the PS has stated that protecting the health of young girls must remain a top priority.