Treatment Action Campaign
The Southern African HIV Clinicians Society has added its voice to the growing criticism of the health department's failure to get its house in order on the prevention of mother to children transmission (PMTCT) programme.
The Department of Health is stalling the introduction of treatment that can prevent more than 90% of pregnant HIV-positive women from passing the virus to their babies. Currently, as many as 30 000 infants in one province alone are being infected with HIV by their mothers each year.
Got a cure for AIDS? Maybe you're convinced that large doses of vitamins can do the trick or that you have found the answer scores of scientists over the last 25 years could not. If you live in South Africa there is little to prevent you from packaging your wonder product in an old coke bottle or a fancy pill container, depending on your means, and selling it for whatever price you can get.
The current AIDS death rate of adults means that in just one year there are about 200 000 children who are orphaned.
For many HIV-positive people in South Africa's Embo area, southwest of the port city of Durban, accessing treatment at public health facilities is as difficult as navigating the steep and muddy paths between their homes. Pausing briefly to catch his breath up the hill to a patient's house, Leonard Gcabashe, a local pastor and community caregiver, recalled the many times he had tumbled down the paths while carrying people who were too sick to walk.
The number of patients awaiting antiretroviral (ARV) treatment is significantly lower than speculated, the Department of Health said on Monday.
An illegal medicines industry is rocketing out of control as unregistered products - many claiming to cure diseases such as cancer, TB and AIDS - are sold across the counter or on the streets.
The Health ministry has instructed provincial departments not to have any dealings with the United Nations special envoy on Aids in Africa.
Civil society organisations in South Africa are preparing to push government to meet its commitment for setting national targets on HIV/AIDS, made at the recent United Nations General Assembly Special Sessions on HIV/AIDS (UNGASS).
The Department of Correctional Services will learn next week if it has leave to appeal against a Durban High Court order to remove any obstacles preventing inmates at Durban's Westville prison from receiving antiretroviral (ARV) treatment.