6. Combat HIV and AIDS, Malaria and Other Diseases


  1. Have and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS
  2. Achieve, by 2010, universal access to treatment for HIV/AIDS for all those who need it
  3. Halt and begin to reverse the incidence of malaria and other diseases


National Status and Perspectives

Combat HIV/AIDS malaria and other diseases

According to the 2011 Zimbabwe Demographic Health Survey (ZDHS) 2011, 15% of Zimbabwean adults aged 15-49 years are infected with HIV, which is a three-point decline from 18% in 2007.

In Zimbabwe, HIV and AIDS is a feminised epidemic, with HIV prevalence among women at 18% and men at 12%. The prevalence rate for 15 to 24 year olds is 5.5% (2011), again much higher in women (7.8%) than in men (3.6%).In general, people with better education and socioeconomic status have lower HIV prevalence.

There is geographical heterogeneity with HIV prevalence, which in urban areas is 17% and rural areas 15%. There were an estimated 1,214,126 people, including 162,889 children, who were living with HIV/AIDS in 2011. An estimated population of 476,321, including 40,140 children, was enrolled on antiretroviral therapy by the end of 2011, of which 60% are women. The prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) coverage is at 86%, with 18% of babies currently being infected.

Zimbabwe is one of 34 African countries that has stabilised the spread of HIV/AIDS, with a 49% reduction in new cases, especially among young people. In addition, blood transfusions are now 100% safe; there is 60.9% correct condom use at last high-risk sex; the incidence of multiple sexual partners is reduced; fewer young people engage in sexual activity before age of 15 years; and 33% of the population know their HIV status.

The country’s successful domestic resource mobilisation through the AIDS levy and strong partnerships remains undaunted. The AIDS levy alone generated $26 million during 2011.

Malaria was a leading cause of hospital admissions in 2009, but 2010 statistics show that incidences of this disease declined by 64%, based on 2000 levels. The number of reported cases of tuberculosis has also decreased, dropping from a peak of 782 per 100,000 people in 2007 to 633 per 100,000 people in 2010. Cholera cases have been reported annually in Zimbabwe since 1998, but these have remained fairly consistent since the large outbreak of 2008. The 2010 typhoid outbreak in Harare was the first to occur for more than 40 years; two further outbreaks occurred in 2011 and late-2012. Preventing these and other diarrhoeal diseases requires exposure to safe drinking water, sound sanitation and good personal hygiene practices.