disease

TB Remains Leading Cause of Natural Deaths

Tuberculosis was the leading underlying natural cause of death in 2015, accounting for 7.2% of deaths. It was followed by diabetes which accounted for 5.4% of the deaths.

"Although tuberculosis has maintained its position as the number one leading underlying natural cause of death, the proportions over time have been declining, whilst proportions for diabetes mellitus, hypertensive diseases, other viral diseases and chronic lower respiratory diseases have been increasing," it said.

One of the Biggest Vaccination Drives Ever is Underway to Beat Yellow Fever

A yellow fever outbreak in parts of Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has led to more than 400 deaths since December 2015. The United Nations has embarked on a massive vaccination campaign with the aim of reaching 14 million people.

What makes this vaccination campaign different or unique?

This is one of the largest vaccination efforts to contain an ongoing outbreak ever undertaken.

UTH, NGOs, Partner to Localise Cardiac Operations

Eight children who were on the waiting list to be evacuated abroad for cardiac surgery recently met their fortune from philanthropic cardiac surgeons who visited University Teaching Hospital (UTH) from Italy.

The team of 10 medical experts were in the country under the auspices of Mission Bambini, an Italian non-governmental organisation (NGO) in collaboration with ‘We for Zambia’, a local Italian NGO.

The two NGOs and the Italian embassy organised the coming of the medical team during their vacation – a noble way of spending one’s holiday.

Bipolar Disorder Can be Triggered by Various Factors

Psychiatrist from South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG), Dr. Antoinette Miric, says substance abuse and the environment may trigger Bipolar Disorder.

Miric points out that, “Bipolar is not only inherited but may be triggered by a number of factors. At SADAG we believe at least 24 percent of the South African population is affected by Bipolar although only one percent has been diagnosed.”

She adds that people who are affected with Bipolar Disorder can live a perfectly normal life with the proper treatment.

​Madikizela-Mandela Recovers After Surgery

The Nelson Mandela Foundation (NMF) says that former first lady Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is recovering after undergoing back surgery.
 
Neeran Naidoo of the Nelson Mandela Foundation issued a statement at the request of the Mandela family, confirming that Madikizela-Mandela is currently in a Johannesburg hospital.
 
Her first surgery, for compression of the spinal nerve and pain relief, took place on 8 March 2016, followed by a second procedure on 14 April 2016 to assist with her recovery, explains Naidoo.
 

​AIDS-Related Deaths Declining, Says OAFLA

AIDS-related deaths are declining in all age groups, except among 10-19 year olds, it was heard during the Organisation of African Firsts Ladies against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA) 16th annual General Assembly.
 
Hosted under the theme ‘Advancing sustainable Partnership to end pediatric AIDS and improve Adolescent’, reported that while African Union (AU) member states made great stride in mother to child HIV transmission, there was not targeted care for HIV positive children.
 

AIDS Vaccine Far from Reality

The Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) says we are still a long way from realising a vaccine or a cure for HIV.

CAPRISA director, Professor, Salim Abdool Karim, says the search for a vaccine is underway, adding that, “So, the search is well underway and I think we have some early, promising data to suggest that it may be a potential way that would help us to develop a vaccine.”

Zimbabwe Confirms Eight Cholera Cases

Zimbabwe has confirmed eight cases of cholera, including two on the border with South Africa.

According to the country’s state-owned newspaper, Herald, two children, aged five and 10, had been quarantined with cholera at Beitbridge District Hospital.

Beitbridge district administrator, Simon Muleya, is quoted as saying that, "The two victims are from the same family and according to our rapid response team there are no other cases from the same village.”

Call to Intensify Fight Against HIV

Tutu says the HIV/AIDS epidemic in South Africa is not over and people need to recommit themselves to eradicating the virus.

In a pre-recorded message at a Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) briefing in Johannesburg, Tutu pointed out that, "AIDS is not over while one person still needs ARV antiretroviral medicines, or dies of tuberculosis."

He said it is not over until the evils that drive HIV, like rape and violence against women and children, are defeated.

Infants Start HIV Treatment Late

According to a study presented at the 2014 Southern African HIV Clinicians Society conference, three quarters of infants starting antiretroviral therapy (ART) across 11 clinics in Southern Africa had severe HIV disease and 87.2 percent met the 2006 World Health Organisation’s (WHO) definition of severe immunosuppression.
 

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