Zimbabwe has become Africa’s first country to approve the use of a long-acting injectable drug to prevent HIV infection.
Regulators in Australia and the US have already given their backing to use the long-acting injectable CAB-LA. The World Health Organisation has also welcomed the move by Zimbabwe.
Head of Evaluations and Registration at the Medicines Control Authority in Zimbabwe, Farai Masekela, says the move will help in the country’s fight against HIV.
Masekela explains, “The new product, which was recently approved, is essentially anti-retroviral which is injected into the bloodstream of patients to try and stop them from acquiring HIV. So there are other products in the same class as this product which are used orally for the treatment of HIV but this is the first injectable of its kind,” adding that “In Zimbabwe, about 11.6% of its population is HIV positive. So that prevalent rate is still a long way as far as fighting HIV is concerned.”
Hence we think this one is one of the tool kits that we will use to fight HIV in Zimbabwe.