HOMEDove siamoMozambique

Mozambique is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a very low human development index, it is 180th out of the 186 countries taken into consideration. Despite the high growth rate of the population (2.6% in 2020), life expectancy is 56 years for men and 59 for women, while the mortality rate is one of the highest in the world.

Urbanisation is a recent and increasing phenomenon but 60% of the population still live in rural areas, with extremely limited infrastructures. The healthcare system is inadequate and there are relatively less doctors, nurses and pharmacists than in its neighbouring countries such as Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Mozambique is one of the 10 countries in the world that has been most badly affected by HIV. In fact the epidemic is estimated to involve around 1,500,000 people, including 800,000 women and 200,000 children. There are around 12, 000 new infections every year.

One of the greatest challenges for antiretroviral therapy to successfully fight HIV is retention in care: establishing and maintaining a stable relationship between the person with HIV and their healthcare staff is indispensible for good adherence to the treatment.

Unfortunately, in Mozambique, after one year 34% of the patients are no longer in treatment and this figure reaches 40% among pregnant women and adolescents. This means there is higher mortality and a widespread circulation of the virus in the population.

Mozambican women also have the second highest incidence of cervical cancer: this neoplasm is associated with HPV, so period screening should be performed. However, only 1% of the women between 30 and 35 years of age are tested regularly.

DREAM in Mozambique

The Community of Sant’Egidio played an important role in the pacification of Mozambique in 1992. Thanks to this process, after the country recovered from its wounds, the first healthcare centre of the DREAM programme was set up in Maputo, with the challenge to defeat the vast plague that was and still is afflicting Africa: HIV and AIDS.

Today the Sant’Egidio Community Programme, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, coordinates and manages 12 healthcare centres in various areas and three molecular biology laboratories (Maputo Centro Para Criança, Zimpeto, Beira) and offers high quality treatment and assistance free of charge to 48,603 patients (as of 31st December 2019). The programme concentrates on the correct and effective treatment of HIV/AIDS, which requires a global and multi-disciplinary approach. Thanks to its specialised staff, DREAM is able to diagnose and treat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and also non-communicable diseases that are common in the country, such as hypertension, diabetes, malnutrition and cervical cancer.

The beneficiaries of the programme are the people who live in the province of Maputo, the city of Maputo, the province of Gaza, the province of Zambesia and the province of Sofala. They are mainly women and children with HIV/AIDS, and their families.

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