Workshop On HIV/AIDS Data Analysis Opens
Addis Ababa, February 11, 2002 (WIC)- A workshop is underway here on the critical
reading and interpretation of HIV/AIDS data for better understanding of the factors involved in
the transmission and spread of the disease, and devise better approaches to combating the
It was indicated in the plenary session that certain sample studies have found that improved
greater male economic autonomy in certain groups has resulted in greater HIV prevalence
The rich, like the powerful, are more mobile, less constrained by community norms and can
afford the lifestyles they choose, which often place them at risk of infection, the study said.
An interesting revelation of the study is that greater female economic autonomy, on the
contrary, led to less HIV/AIDS prevalence rate among women.
Dr. Dagnatchew Demisse, of the National HIV/AIDS Secretariat said that this is to be explained
by the fact that as women’s economic status improves, they become more informed about the
disease, become more insistent on avoiding high risk sexual practices.
He added that the important lesson to be learnt from the study was that HIV/AIDS
interventions will have more pronounced effect on women than men, and that women
empowerment must be a top priority in any HIV/AIDS prevention activities.
Speaking on the occasion, Ato Negatu Mereke, Head of the National Aids Secretariat said “in
light of the time that has passed since the launching of Ethiopia’s HIV/AIDS program, it is
evident there is still a lot of work to do before the spread of the disease is checked. He
however, said the performance so far achieved are not discouraging.
The involvement of the media, civil society, including religious organizations and the private
sector is increasingly enhanced and has shown encouraging results, he added.
The two day workshop, at the Hilton organized by the United Nations Development Programe
(UNDP) is attended by representatives from government agencies, and non-governmental
organizations working in the prevention and control of the disease.