The good and the bad

The good news on medical schemes is that the industry is turning around from huge losses. The bad news is that nobody's tracking how much medical costs consumers are carrying. On average, the industry performed pretty well, according to acting registrar of medical schemes Patrick Matshidze.

Many children still miss out on treatment

Experience has shown that it is possible to run successful paediatric HIV programmes in rural African settings, yet less than 10 percent of patients on life-prolonging antiretroviral (ARV) drugs are children, field officers of the international medical NGO, Mdecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), have said.

AIDS treatment guidelines under scrutiny

South Africa's official AIDS treatment guidelines are being re-assessed after the international AIDS conference. Health Department chief director of HIV and AIDS Dr Nomonde Xundu said: There is a draft recommendation that is being discussed.

TB: 'Patients are the weakest link'

Nearly 50 000 people in the Western Cape are receiving treatment at provincial health facilities for tuberculosis. Of these, 450 people are being treated for the multidrug-resistant (MDR) strain and 55 for extensively drug resistant (XDR) TB, says Health MEC Marius Fransman.

Medical Male Circumcision: thinking through the impact for a feminised epidemic

Series Name: 
Nursing Update
Published by: 
Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa
Marion Stevens of the Health Systems Trust focuses on the recent meetings and discussion around medical male circumcision.

There has been a lot of discussion and a lot of resource mobilisation (donors setting money aside) on medical male circumcision. This has been so given recent research findings and the desperate need to find 'something' to do to increase real results in the prevention, treatment and care, and support arena. However, concerns have been expressed about the real implications. The World Health Organization (WHO) held a meeting in Mombasa last month to discuss this issue and the Aids Vaccine Advocacy Coalition held a meeting prior to this to particularly focus on growing concerns regarding the impact of medical male circumcision on an epidemic in which women are mostly infected and affected. I include a background document and a consensus statement from the meeting.