IN 2000, the leaders of 189 nations signed the Millennium Declaration of the United Nations (UN), pledging to free their people from poverty, illiteracy and ill health. This commitment gave rise to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the target date for the achievement of which is 2015.
The eight goals are to: eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; achieve universal primary education; promote gender equality and empower women; reduce child mortality; improve maternal health; combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases; ensure environmental sustainability; and develop a global partnership for development.
Hospital upgrades, HIV/Aids and TB treatment and the improvement of specialist services at tertiary hospitals are to get the biggest slice of this year’s Western Cape provincial health budget, says Health MEC Theuns Botha.
Tabling his R14.632 billion budget this week – the biggest slice of the overall provincial budget – Botha said about 87 percent, or R12.7bn, of the budget would be allocated to district health services.
The South African National Aids Council (Sanac) met last week ahead of the start date of April 1 for the new National Strategic Plan on HIV-Aids, TB and STIs, to review the implementation of the plan.
At the meeting it was decided that it was critical to prioritise HIV prevention among young girls and young women over the next five years, particularly in the first year.
The Gauteng Health Department says decentralising TB treatment will help address the number of treatment defaulters the province currently has.
About 56 000 people were tested positive for TB last year in Gauteng and 45 percent of them successfully completed their six month treatment programme. The remaining 55 percent is unaccounted for. The province also has a high defaulter rate of patients who have Multi-Drug Resistant (MDR) TB.
The government plans to bring down new HIV infection rates to zero in the next 20 years, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe said on Saturday.
Motlanthe was addressing workers and dignitaries at the Goldfields mine in Carletonville, Gauteng on the occasion of world tuberculosis (TB) day.
He said the National Strategic Plan for HIV, TB and sexually transmitted infections (STI) would aim at eliminating new HIV and TB infections, mother to child HIV infections, and have zero preventable deaths as well as discrimination associated with the two viruses.
Regulators are increasingly scrutinizing HIV and TB responses in South Africa’s mining sector, which could lead to the industry being hit where it hurts - the bottom line.
The fight against new, antibiotic-resistant strains of tuberculosis has already been lost in some parts of the world, according to a senior World Health Organisation expert. Figures show a 5% rise in the number of new cases of the highly infectious disease in the UK.
Dr Paul Nunn, head of the WHO's global TB response team, is leading the efforts against multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB). Nunn said that, while TB is preventable and curable, a combination of bad management and misdiagnosis was leaving pharmaceutical companies struggling to keep up. Meanwhile, the disease kills millions every year.
Tuberculosis (TB) is the leading killer of HIV-positive people globally. Almost 15 years ago the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNAIDS recommended that people living with HIV be given isoniazid preventative TB therapy (IPT), to prevent active TB, but national implementation of IPT has been slow.
IPT, intensified TB case finding, and infection control are now the World Health Organization’s three strategies for reducing TB among people living with HIV, also known as the "Three I's for HIV-TB."
IRIN/PlusNews charts the uneven adoption of TB preventative therapy in southern Africa, which has the unhappy distinction of bearing some of the world's highest HIV and TB burdens.
South Africa has made much progress in the fight against tuberculosis (TB) in recent years. However, national health spokesperson Fidel Hadebe said that much more still needed to be done to ease the burden of the disease.
“We are working hard to reach the targets set out in the Millennium Development Goals,” he said.
Hadebe wouldn’t say much about South Africa’s progress in reaching the 2015 targets. He said thatt the matter would be addressed by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe on Saturday during World TB Day.
Despite advances made in the access to TB treatment, the disease is now the leading cause of death in the country.
Newer and more effective drugs to be used in the treatment of HIV/AIDS. This came out of a gathering in Cape Town where delegates discussed how best to improve health care in Africa.
Efforts to reduce the burden of disease in Africa over the last 10 years have improved. But malaria, TB and HIV/AIDS are still critical issues facing African countries. At a meeting held in Cape Town to discuss health care in Africa, it was heard that new drugs are in the pipeline for the better treatment and management of HIV/AIDS.