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SA Could Halve New HIV Infections — Report
Source: Polity News
Source Date: Saturday, November 20, 2010
Focus: Institution and HR Management
Country: South Africa
Created: Nov 22, 2010

The report recommends drawing up and funding more effective plans for prevention, treatment and halting the transmission of the virus from infected parents to their children.

Even if it implements these plans, a further five-million more South Africans will be infected with HIV over the next two decades, according to the report from the Centre for Economic Governance and Aids in Africa and the Results for Development Institute.

The government has allocated several billion dollars a year for treatment, prevention and drugs aimed at keeping HIV infections in check.

Total costs over the next two decades to reduce the number of new infections are estimated to be as much as $102-billion if the country steps up spending on drugs, increases the number of those receiving treatment and plans to prevent the spread of the disease, the report said.

"South Africa is beginning to make important inroads in its efforts to slow the number of new infections and bring life saving treatment to those who need it", said Robert Hecht, one of the report's authors and managing director of the Results for Development Institute.

UNAids said that access to treatment for the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) - an incurable viral infection that causes Aids and infects around 33,4-million people around the world - has increased 12-fold in six years, and 5,2-million people are now getting the drugs they need.

Sub-Saharan Africa remains the region hardest hit by HIV, accounting for 67% of all people living with the virus worldwide, 71%of Aids-related deaths and 91% of all new infections among children.

African nations whose populations have been devastated by Aids have made big strides in fighting HIV, with new infections down 25% since 2001 in some of the worst hit places, a recent UN report said.


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