Out of the 3.2 million people reportedly suffering from the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) in Nigeria, only 900,000 have access to treatment, a professor of Haematology and Transfusion Medicine at the College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Professor Suleiman Akanmu, has revealed.
There are concerns that HIV positive patients cannot access medications in Nigeria.
The situation is currently raising concerns especially with a growing incidence of resistance to anti-retroviral medications in the country.
It was gathered that Prof. Akanmu, who is also the Chairman, National Task Team on Antiretroviral therapy (ART) in Nigeria, spoke at a programme organised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) where he blamed the development on an inability to carry out routine viral load test, as well as unavailability of second and third line medications to treat HIV.
He was quoted to have said, “Many of our patients that are on first line drugs are failing and they are supposed to be put on second line drugs which is not available now.
“Also we are not detecting failure on time, if you have about 900,000 Nigerians on first line dr*gs, we do not know how many of them have failed the first line regimen because we do not routinely carry out viral load test to show that while on dr*gs, the virus is still detectable in them.