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Huge Increase In Condom Use Key To Zimbabwe's Progress On AIDS


Britain has donated 20 million pounds, or about US$38 million, to bolster Zimbabwe’s battle against HIV-AIDS, which has shown some signs of retreating in large part due to the significantly increased use of condoms by women as well as men.

British Ambassador Andrew Pocock cited the government's “commitment, dedication and foresight” in fighting AIDS, the state-run Herald newspaper reported.

The funds will help prevent the spread of AIDS through increased testing for infection with the virus that causes AIDS, and increased awareness of the risk of infection.

Zimbabwe has already made progress in slowing the spread of AIDS. HIV prevalance has declined from one in four adults to one in five in recent years, and experts say a major factor has been changes in behavior including the use of condoms.

The use of female condoms increased 240% over the past five years, according to Britain's Department for International Development. More than 160 million male and female condoms were sold in Zimbabwe over the same period, many through the efforts of Population Services International, a DFID contractor.

Reporter Ndimyake Mwakalyelye of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe asked PSI's head of research, monitoring and evaluation Noah Taruberekera, about the trend.

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