The Zimbabwe National Network of People Living with HIV (ZNNP+) on 1st July 2020 launched the People Living with HIV (PLHIV) virtual platform call centre called Kutabila, covering Zimbabwe’s ten provinces plus a dedicated line for Youth and Key Populations. The call centre was made possible with financial and technical support from the UNAIDS and National AIDS Council of Zimbabwe. A virtual platform provides a trusted connection between the umbrella network and recipients of care. It is a PLHIV-led response to the emergency brought about by COVID-19 and lessons learnt from previous disasters and emergencies such as the Chingwizi and Idai floods that severely affected PLHIV’s access to health services.
Welcome to the third edition of Rararamo ineTariro nePEPFAR, the PEPFAR Zimbabwe e-newsletter. The last six months have been trying and exhausting for everyone working in the health sector – almost no one has been spared the effects of the fast-spreading COVID-19 disease. Predictably, many of our PEPFAR-supported programs in Zimbabwe have taken a hit. Still, PEPFAR’s quarter three results (April-June) show remarkable increases in HIV treatment linkage and retention, as well as record-high viral load coverage and suppression. We would like to dedicate this issue of the newsletter to our implementing partners who have found the tenacity to protect gains made in the response to HIV. Their efforts are nothing short of heroic.
Zimbabwe National Network of People living with HIV (ZNNP+) and Zimbabwe Young
Positives (ZY+) join the rest of the world in commemorating The International AIDS
Candlelight Memorial running under the theme “We remember – We take action – We
live beyond HIV”. As the world deals with the coronavirus pandemic we must support our
families and communities to stay healthy. People living with HIV have a role to play
beyond the HIV response and this year’s memorial is an opportunity for all PLHIV to act in
solidarity with the world as we deal with COVID-19 and its impact on all spheres of our
COVID-19 is a severe public health emergency for all citizens and societies with infections. It
is also a major health and socio-economic shock to People Living with HIV (PLHIV).
Compared with the general population, people with compromised immunity are at higher risk
of contracting the new coronavirus and developing more serious COVID-19 illness; and this
includes People Living with HIV. The HIV population is aging, and nearly half are over 50.
Those with low CD4 T-cell counts or indicating advanced immune suppression are at greatest
Zimbabwe National Network of People Living with HIV (ZNNP+), Zimbabwe Young Positives (ZY+),
Activists and other representatives of people living with HIV in Zimbabwe submitted a petition to
parliament on the need for the Government of Zimbabwe to raise the more than US$6 million
required as a commitment to the Global Fund in order to access US$400 million. The petition also
highlighted the challenges in access to treatment by PLHIV in Zimbabwe especially second line drugs
as well as expired drugs being dispensed to PLHIV. The petition was submitted on the 4th of July 2019
and discussed on the 18th of July 2019.
Today, People Living with HIV (PLHIV), networks and civil society organizations gather at
the Africa Unity Square in Harare to deliberate on the key challenges affecting PLHIV and to
petition the government through parliament to act with greater urgency on a pending health
The Zimbabwe National Network of People Living with HIV (ZNNP+) is greatly saddened by
the loss of life due to Cyclone Idai that hit mainly Manicaland and many other parts of the
country. We convey our deepest condolences to all the families that have lost their loved
ones due to the cyclone. We appreciate the declaration of the cyclone tragedy as a
national disaster. This will ensure the much needed flow of assistance to affected