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Persons Living with HIV demonstrate over ARVs shortage

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By Jacob Oluoch

Persons Living with HIV/Aids in Kisumu County today took to the streets to protest against the delayed distribution of the Antiretroviral drugs popularly known as ARVs.

The people under the umbrella Members of National Empowerment of People Living with HIV in Kenya say that the shortage of drugs has disrupted their lives putting their health at risk.

Speaking to Ghetto Radio News Eric Okioma says that the government’s fight with USAID over the taxation of the ARVs has even caused children living with HIV not get their daily doses of the drugs.

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“The disruption of the distribution of drugs started in September last year. This has affected us a lot because the trips to hospitals are exposing us to many other infections like Covid-19,” said Okioma.

Okioma says that the PLHIV are getting re fills that last them only a few weeks further risking them to other infections.

“The shortage is unfortunately everywhere. The medics responsible for the distribution of the drugs are trying so hard to balance the issuance of the drugs with, they try to give the little they have according to the number of people on the queues,” he said.

The Ministry of Health on Friday last week sent the first batch of ARVs for more than 100,000 people to six counties in Central Kenya.

The next delivery was supposed to be made on Tuesday to other counties in the western region.

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