Over 770 pregnant women tested positive for syphilis between January and June this year in the Midlands province, an official in the ministry of health has revealed. Provincial monitoring and evaluation officer in the ministry of health and child care, Tuso Tanda, said some 22,200 pregnant women were tested for syphilis with 776 testing positive. He said out of those who tested positive, 529 women were treated for the sexually transmitted disease. “We had 22,206 pregnant women tested for syphilis between January and June this year and out of this number 776 tested positive,” Tanda said at the third quarter of the National Aids Council stakeholders meeting in Gweru last week. Gokwe South and North had the highest and lowest positivity rate at 7,2% and 0,5% respectively. “Positivity rate for syphilis among pregnant women was at 3.5% in the second quarter of 2016 with positivity rate being highest in Gokwe South (7.2%) followed by Kwekwe (6.3%),” he said. Health experts say about 50 percent of pregnant women with untreated early syphilis end up with a baby who is infected. According to World Health Organisation, over a million pregnant women are infected with syphilis worldwide.

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