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South Africa: SA Health Strategy Hailed
Source: GEMS News
Source Date: Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Focus: Knowledge Management in Government
Country: South Africa
Created: Jun 19, 2012

The national strategic plan for health is intended to halve the TB death rate by 2015, and increase testing for TB and the number of people receiving TB and HIV treatment. It proposes that all people infected with TB be treated with ARVs, regardless of their CD4 count, in line with World Health Organisation recommendations.


Wits University associate professor Francois Venter said the plan's objectives would become government policy. The plan - which identifies the "social and structural drivers of HIV and TB", such as living in an informal settlement, alcohol and substance abuse, and migration as risk factors for contracting both HIV and TB - proposes numerous social and economic interventions.


The plan has been criticised by some for the late inclusion of TB treatment. John Heinrich, chief executive of the SA National Tuberculosis organisation, asked why it had taken so long to recognise that treatment of TB and HIV could not be separated. Fareed Abdullah, chief executive of the SA National AIDS Council, which will monitor the plan's implementation, called the plan's targets "ambitious but achievable".


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