371 babies born HIV free in Mzimba


At least 371 babies born between January 2014 and February 2016 from HIV positive mothers in three Traditional Authorities in Mzimba tested HIV negative courtesy of a project called Kalondolondo wa amama.

A local non-governmental organisation called Globe Hope Mobilisation implemented the project in the areas of chiefs Mzikubola, Mzukuzuku and Mmbelwa covering 304 villages.

Speaking to stakeholders in Mzimba on Wednesday, during programme quarterly briefing, Globe Hope Mobilisation executive director, Caleb Thole, said 371 babies were born HIV negative from positive mothers over the past two years in the three Traditional Authorities.


He said this was because of the intervention of the project which encourages expectant mothers to regularly visit the hospital for antenatal clinics.

“We have established community based structures that are able to identify and refer pregnant mothers to health service providers. This was a big gap in Malawi. If the mothers are HIV positive, they get Option B Plus treatment and are put on ART. At every village level, we have not less than five women who look for pregnant mothers in the community and refer them to hospitals,” said Thole.

He commended Positive Action for Children’s Fund, who were funding the project, for the gesture.


He said the community structures also hunt for women who stopped attending antenatal sessions and encourage them to continue. After giving birth, the women are also linked to support groups.

Thole explained that the baby is tested for HIV after six weeks of birth then after 12 months and finally after 24 months. He said if the child tests negative after two years, he is certified HIV negative.

Mzimba District Health Officer, Absalom Kaunda, commended Globe Hope Mobilization for saving the lives of babies in the district and urged the donors to consider extending it to the entire district for some years to save more lives.

He said at district level, 65 percent of the babies that have been tested so far, were HIV negative.

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