The World Health Organization (WHO) awarded Botswana silver tier status in December of last year in appreciation of the country’s efforts to eliminate human immunodeficiency virus transmission (HIV) from mother to child.

The WHO bestows this award on nations that have reduced mother-to-child transmission to less than 5%, care for expectant mothers, treat more than 90percent of HIV-positive pregnant women, and have less than 500 HIV-transmitted birth rates per 100,000 people.

What you need to know

Every day, approximately 1,400 children become HIV positive, and 1,000 die as a result of HIV-related factors, while approximately 2.5 million children under 15 years of age live with HIV/AIDS worldwide, 1.9 million of them are in  African Sub-Sahara.

As a result, we will investigate what Botswana had done to reduce HIV transmission from mother to child, what other nations should learn from it, and what we all should do to help.

Three crucial facts regarding Botswana’s HIV eradication efforts

Botswana would be the first high-burden nation to be recognised for attaining a  “silver tier” milestone on the path to eradicating mother-to-child transmission.

In HIV-positive women who do not receive any medical interventions, mother-to-child transmission is in the range from 15% to 45 percent during breastfeeding, delivery, and pregnancy.

90% of HIV-infected babies born to HIV positive mothers are born in African Sub-Sahara.

What are the consequences of Botswana’s efforts?

Botswana joins Bermuda, Cuba, Thailand, and Sri Lanka in receiving “silver tier” certification for its efforts to eliminate this pattern of disease transmission. However, Botswana deserves special recognition for its efforts because no other nation on the WHO’s list was dealing with an epidemic as serious as Botswana’s.

Following Botswana’s recognition, UNICEF’s Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, Mohammed Fall, said, “We congratulate Botswana for this great accomplishment, which serves as a motivation to other nations in Eastern and Southern Africa.”

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