Edo Govt Debunks Claim on HIV Prevalence of Pregnant Women

By Gloria Afajagbe

The Edo State Government has debunked a false and misleading comment by a purported doctor that 30 out of 50 pregnant women in the state are persons living with the Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV).

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A statement signed by the Edo State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akoria Obehi, urged residents to disregard the false and deceptive claims, noting that only 0.6 percent of pregnant women were living with the virus in the state.

The statement read in part: “The attention of the Edo State Ministry of Health has been drawn to a video on social media in which a purported “doctor” stated that 30 out of 50 pregnant women in Edo State are persons living with the Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV).

“This claim suggests that the prevalence of HIV in pregnant women in Edo State is an alarming 60%, which is completely untrue.

“According to the National AIDS Indicator Survey (NAIS), 2018 – the most recently updated survey on HIV in Nigeria, Edo State has an estimated 44,000 persons living with HIV: a prevalence rate of 1.8%”.

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Prof. Akoria further noted that, 10,019 pregnant women in the state have been tested for the virus in 2023, out of which 59 tested positive; giving a positivity rate of 0.6%.

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“The State Ministry of Health and its agencies actively work with partners to prevent and reduce transmission of HIV, provide treatment, and other required support for Persons Living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIVS).

“There are personal, social, cultural, and societal factors that underlie poor disclosure of HIV status. Individual, couple, and family counselling are in place at every level in our healthcare system to provide the necessary support for PLHIVS.

“The State Ministry of Health will address the professional and regulatory concerns that the video has raised”, she said.

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The commissioner advised residents and concerned persons to completely disregard unfounded claims made by persons of questionable credentials whose motives may not pass integrity tests.

Ismail Aniemu

Ismail Aniemu, Publisher of JournalNG and ghost writer, is a maritime journalist of over two decades' of practice with multidisciplinary background. He holds a masters degree in Transport Management from Ladoke Akintola University of Technology(LAUTECH) with bias for logistics. He is also an alumnus of the Times Journalism Institute where he obtained a post graduate diploma in Journalism. Email:

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