Malawi’s youths are and other sexual active groups are finding it difficult to access condoms in some public hospital which puts lives of the youths in danger.
The problem has mainly hit some health facilities in Zomba including the main referral Hospital.
A visit by Nyasa Times in Zomba health facilities, indicated that youths were depending on alternative outlets to access the condoms.
“We either buy them in chain stores or else we go without putting them,” said one of the Zomba based youths Yanjanani Sipuni from Old Naisi.
Another youth member, Akim Benala from Matawale said the problem started some time back.
MANASO Executive Director, Abgail Dzimazi, expressed concern that condom shortage, is likely to fuel the increase of new HIV/Aids infections.
Dzimazi said condom use is christened as one of Malawi’s key preventive method as Malawi eyes
“If the problem persists then we will have problem in achieving our goals,” Said dzimadzi.
Dzimadzi urged government machinery especially the ministry of Health to address the supply chain and also increase number of condoms which they buy annually.
Hans Katengeza is adolescent and youth Programme Officer in the Ministry of Health says the condom scarcity in Zomba is due to logistical problems.
“The condom are there, but the problem is just logistical, its not a crisis,” Said Katengeza.
Family Planning Association of Malawi (FPAM) Director of Programmes, Lonnie Ncozana, says condom use is very critical in the prevention of transmission of HIV.
Ncozana says FPAM is rolling out condom use intervention programmes dubbed ‘Use Condom Use Sense Tisaphweketse’.
The project targets youths in tertiary education.
Ncozana says so far FPAM will continue bringing friendly services in all tertiary education.
“Condom is one of the only available and highly effective HIV prevention tools in Malawi, especially when used consistently and correctly, ” Said Ncozana.
Ncozana said condom use can reduce about 80-90% risk of getting STI and unwanted pregnancies.
FPAM has already established parallel health facilities at Chancellor College, a constituent of the University of Malawi in order to help the youths access health care within their reach, with funding from UNFPA.
One of Fpam’s officials, Roney Mjozama, speaking at Chancellor College during a sensitization campaign urged University students to stick to ABC (Abstinence, be faithful, use a condom) strategy as the only way to prevent HIV/AIDS among youth and adolescents.
Mjozama said young people are at risk of contracting HIV, adding that there is need to have more action to ensure that they live healthy.
She also advised the students to have a culture of testing for HIV and if they are found to be positive they should seek for medical care immediately.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :