NAIROBI, June 5 (Xinhua) -- Kenya's Health Ministry on Tuesday launched a population based HIV impact assessment survey to find the state of HIV epidemic and the impact of efforts towards the epidemic control.
Sicily Kariuki, Health Cabinet Secretary, said the Kenya Population Based HIV Impact Assessment (KENPHIA) survey will provide valuable and first hand insights on the progress made so far as well as identify and quantify the existing gaps.
"We are scientifically measuring our success and identify gaps to enable us re-design our response towards HIV and Aids," Kariuki said this during the launch of the survey in Nairobi.
She noted that the survey that will cost Kenya 15 million U.S. dollars will also be assessing the level of new HIV infections.
The CS noted that the survey will enable the 47 county governments have reliable data on the burden of HIV and Aids, the knowledge, attitudes and behaviors that affect persons at risk of HIV infection.
"It will also avail the coverage of unmet need for HIV prevention, care and treatment services," she added.
Kariuki said even though Kenya has 1.1 million people living with HIV and Aids, 53 percent of HIV infected persons are unaware of their infection status.
"The findings will inform ongoing work on ensuring that every Kenyan has access to care regardless of geographic, ethnic and social economic diversity," he said.
Bartilol Kigen, the head of National AIDS & STI Control Program (NASCOP), said blood samples will be collected to measure biomarkers that will indicate infected people, recent infections and the number of HIV infected people who are on effective treatment.
Kigen said the researchers will in the next six months visit 20,000 randomly selected households and interview them.
"They will obtain voluntary informed consent from participants and collect demographic, clinical and behavioral information through face-to-face interview," he added.