Rise Of Sexually Transmitted Infections In Ngamiland

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Authorities have expressed concern over the prevalence of sexually transmitted infections in the Ngamiland district which is increasing on a yearly basis. This was confirmed by the Ngami District Aids Coordinator Kebabonye Thamuku during an STI Campaign held in Maun recently.

He said cases of STIs are increasing in Ngamiland despite strategies to empower communities on such issues. On an average, Thamuku revealed that they register around 1 000 cases every month.

Thamuku revealed that in 2016 they registered 5812 cases and then going forward to the year 2022 they registered 9891 cases. Though he indicated that the total number of registered cases this year has not yet been analyzed, he revealed that from the month of July to September, 3114 cases were registered.

He further revealed that among these cases the most prevalent age is the youth of 15 years to 49 year olds of which many depend on. The District Aids Coordinator said that this also indicated the high number of people who engage in unprotected sex.

“Considering the registered cases, it is an indication that the usage of condoms is low in the community,” he said.

Thamuku also revealed that male testing rates for STIs have been identified as one potential factor sustaining high rates of STIs and repeat infections as they are very low.

“When females are given referral slips to give to their partners, only 1 in 40 go for HIV/AIDS testing and STI treatment,” he added. He said that among the 9891 STI cases that were registered last year only 1000 men came for treatment.

Meanwhile, the Letsholathebe II Memorial Hospital Advisory Committee Chairperson Prophet TP Elias who is also the Director of the Okavango Air Rescue that provides professional medical Helicopter Rescue Services for the remote and inaccessible areas of the country has pledged to adopt the Kubung Health Post by assisting with STI services.

Elias said that they will send out doctors and nurses to assist with the HIV Testing, STI screening and all the other services that are needed. He also said that they will also spare two or three hours at the health post assisting with services.

He further indicated that STIs are a huge concern as they also harm the reproductive system, which affects child bearing. He further advised the community to change ways and use protection to avoid infection.

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