Fake and substandard drugs in Africa by immoral medical companies is a serious worry. Malaria continues to be a serious concern. It affects more than 100 countries and about 40percent of the worlds population. It causes between 300 and 500 million infections and about a million deaths each year. It is estimated that malaria kills a child every 30 seconds in spite of the disease being entirely preventable and curable. At the eighth World Health Assembly meeting in 1955, it was resolved to begin a worldwide eradication campaign of malaria. Though the campaign was eventually abandoned and considered a failure, it registered resounding successes in eradicating malaria from large regions across the globe. The successful application of insecticides and the effectiveness of antimalarial treatments formed the cornerstones of the programme.
Speech by Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang at the Launch of: (I) The Ethics Guidelines' Ethics in Health Research: Principles, Structures and Processes and (II) The Guidelines on Ethics for Medical Research: HIV Preventive Vaccine Research (MRC Book 5).
CLOSING DATE: 14th September 2009
Enhancing Childrens HIV Outcomes (ECHO) purpose is to save and enhance the lives of children and adolescents infected and affected by HIV and AIDS.
For a payment of R150 Albertina Shakoane will provide five litres of her mauve-coloured tea she claims will cure AIDS. She makes the infusion from a small leafy plant, which her father pointed out to her when she was growing up in Cullinan, describing it as a medicinal Jack of all trades. Shakoane says she has 20 customers, and as news spreads in her community, demand is growing. Shakoane's treatments are illegal. The World Health Organisation estimates that 80% of people living in Africa use traditional medicines. At present 70% of South Africans consult the more than 200000 traditional healers in the country. The African traditional medicines market is unregulated, leaving consumers vulnerable to unsubstantiated claims and potentially lethal remedies. There are countless concoctions on the market that have absolutely no therapeutic benefit. Diluted Jeyes Fluid, industrial solvents and battery acid are just some of the dubious ingredients commonly found in fake traditional medicines.The ever-increasing numbers of people infected with HIV, few of whom have access to antiretroviral medicines, are contributing to the demand for traditional medicines. Traditional remedies, which have evolved amongst indigenous communities in SA over thousands of years of careful use and observation, hold hope of new treatments and perhaps even cures for diseases. The problem is sifting through the claims, and deciding which remedies to subject to scientific scrutiny with the limited resources available to conduct clinical trials, says Gilbert Matsabisa, head of the Medical Research Council's Indigenous Knowledge Systems health unit. An initiative launched at the weekend by the health department may help efforts to find the effective traditional remedies. The National Reference Centre for African Traditional Medicines is a virtual institution that will be jointly managed by the Medical Research Council and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). It plans to establish a network of experts and facilities, and a database that captures information on traditional remedies and encourages people who bring cures to track the progress of research into their products. We expect samples to come in from a wide range of sources, from plants that are widely used to those that are not. We will prioritise (claims) based on their usage and national priorities, says Vinesh Maharaj, business manager for bio-prospecting at the CSIR's Biochemtek division. (Source: Tamar Kahn: Business Day, 3 September 2003)
Health Systems Trust
The assessment of client satisfaction, forms an important part of the management of a health facility, especially after the adoption of the Batho Pele (People First) and the Patients Right Charter. The main objective in undertaking this research study was to develop an instrument that would assess the satisfaction levels of clients utilising two district hospitals in South Africa. The hospitals were the Gordonia Hospital in Upington, and the East Griqualand and Usher Memorial Hospitals in Kokstad.