The Ministry of Health and Child Care last week launched the Zimbabwe Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (ZIMPHIA) at Flamboyant Hotel in Masvingo with stakeholders calling for cooperation from the public, to ensure the success of the programme.
ZIMPHIA is a cross-sectional survey targeting 15 000 homes randomly selected from the country's ten provinces in which about 30 000 adults and children are expected to be tested for HIV and AIDS.
Syphilis testing will be offered to those 15 years and above.
Dr Owen Mugurungi, Ministry of Health and Child Care's Director of AIDS and TB said he expected the survey to register great success in Masvingo and the rest of the country.
"People will participate in the privacy and comfort of their homes with their privacy being strictly respected. We are looking forward to a fruitful working relationship with all stakeholders involved," said Dr Mugurungi.
ZIMPHIA is part of the PHIA Project, a five-year, multi-country initiative funded by the United States Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) through the US President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and led by ICAP.
The PHIA Project consists of household-based population surveys that will collect information related to HIV in approximately 15 to 20 African countries.
CDC Zimbabwe Epidemiology and Strategic Information Branch Chief, Amaka Nwankwo-Igomu said Zimbabwe was at a turning point in the quest for an HIV-free generation.
"We are happy Zimbabwe is among the first countries in the world to implement such a survey. PEPFAR is committed to continue to support AIDS relief efforts in Zimbabwe and elsewhere," said Nwankwo-Igomu.
The main objectives of ZIMPHIA are to estimate new HIV infections at national level and estimate provincial prevalence of suppressed viral load in HIV-infected adults.
Authorities say previous surveys like the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) and the Zimbabwe Demographic Health Survey (ZDHS) and the yearly national HIV and AIDS estimates did not provide the same quality of data as ZIMPHIA.news