Malawi: One of the highest HIV/AIDS rates in the world

  • International staff: 17
  • National staff: 75 Malawi has been stricken by AIDS. Estimates put the HIV infection rate among 15-49 year-olds at over 15%, and in the overall population at 7%. A large majority of hospital beds are filled with people suffering from AIDS-related illnesses and complications. MSF works in Thyolo, Mwanza and Chiradzulu districts to try and stem the spread of disease through both prevention and treatment. In the district hospitals, teams work to care for patients, improve universal precautions and sterilization procedures and train staff. Patient counseling is becoming an increasing priority. In Thyolo, special emphasis is placed on testing, counseling and treating people with tuberculosis, an opportunistic infection common in those with HIV. AIDS prevention activities are aimed at young people, local leaders, healers and prisoners. MSF has also opened centers for free and anonymous HIV/AIDS testing in all three districts. MSF takes part in Malawi's National Technical Committee for the Control of the AIDS epidemic. MSF has been active in Malawi since 1986.