Anti-retroviral treatment to HIV positive South Africans will be dramatically advanced after government concluded a R24 billion deal with Aspen Pharmacare to intensify manufacturing of antiretroviral drugs (ARVs).
Trade and Industry Minister, Rob Davies, says the agreement will help stimulate local manufacturing, adding that,” That ARV tender has fought a lot of mays and ifs and buts about it, but an indicative target of 70 percent local procurement…”
The massive tender aims to improve ARV supplies to patients and will also be a massive cash injection for local producers. Foreign manufacturers will also have to invest and produce in South Africa to take advantage of the local procurement clause.”
To read the article titled, “ARV's provision to HIV positive persons to advance next year,” click here.Source:SABC Education
The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS) says the HIV/AIDS epidemic could end in 15 years if ‘fast-track targets’ are accelerated in the next six years - if not, infection rates could continue to rise.
The UN agency says if these targets are reached, 20.6-million AIDS-related deaths will be averted by 2030 and 27.9-million new adult HIV infections and 5.9-million infections among children will also decrease.
It says that, “Ending the Aids epidemic as a global health threat is no longer a dream. It can be a reality within 15 years if we accelerate action today.”
To read the article titled, “AIDS could be over by 2030 - or it could get worse than it is now,” click here.Source:Mail and Guardian
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.
There was a modest improvement in the proportion of infants who started treatment before the onset of severe immunosuppression or severe HIV-related illnesses after 2009, but the majority of infants starting treatment in 2012 had stage 3-4 of the HIV disease.
The study described the outcomes of infants starting ART at 11 clinics in Malawi, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe, with data collected by sites contributing to the International Epidemiologic Database to Evaluate AIDS in Southern African (IeDEA-SA).
To read the article titled, “Infants in southern Africa start antiretroviral therapy late with advanced disease,” click here.Source:Aids Map
The United Nations has launched a mission to prevent the global spread of Ebola, describing the epidemic as the world's ‘highest priority’ as the United States scrambled to limit its own outbreak.
Anthony Banbury, head of the UN Mission on Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER), began a tour of the three hardest-hit nations in the Liberian capital Monrovia setting out an ambitious goal to eradicate the deadly virus.
"The only way we will end this crisis is if we end every single last case of Ebola so there is no more risk of transmission to anyone, and when that's accomplished, UNMEER will go home," explains Banbury.
To read the article titled, “Stopping global Ebola spread 'world's highest priority': UN,” click here.Source:Sowetan Live
A United Nations (UN) trust fund seeking nearly US$1 billion for rapid, flexible funding of the most urgent needs to fight Ebola in West Africa has received a deposit of just US$100 000 nearly a month after it was set up.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said in September that US$988 million is needed to tackle the deadly haemorrhagic fever over the next six months and since then, US$365 million has been committed to stop Ebola in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, which have been hit hardest by the epidemic.
Nearly all that money was donated directly to UN agencies and nonprofits working in West Africa with just US$100 000 paid by Colombia into the trust fund set up by Ki-moon, according to UN records.
To read the article titled, “UN Ebola trust fund gets US$100 000, almost US$1 billion needed,” click here.Source:SABC News
The World Health Organisation (WHO) states that, the Ebola epidemic is set to explode unless the response is radically intensified, warning that hundreds of thousands could be infected by the end of 2014.
In a report, the United Nations agency declares that new cases would surge from hundreds each week to thousands without ‘drastic improvements in control measures’, with the number of infections set to more than triple to 20 000 by November 2014.
The research paper warns that the outbreak could drag out for years and become entrenched in West Africa, which has already seen almost 3 000 deaths.
To read the article titled, “Ebola cases to explode without drastic action: WHO,” click here.Source:The Citizen
Director of the University of Pretoria's Centre for Human Rights, Frans Viljoen, believes South Africa should have played the leading role in the fight against the spread of the Ebola virus in Africa.
Speaking at the University of Pretoria’s panel discussion on South Africa's preparedness for Ebola, Viljoen stresses that, “As a beacon of public health on the continent, as a country that stands for African problems being resolved by Africans themselves, South Africa should have taken a leading role.”
He states that the country should have taken more proactive steps, instead of merely making sure there was protective clothing available.
To read the article titled, “SA negating Ebola role: expert,” click here.Source:IOL News
The international medical agency, Medecins sans Frontieres, says the world was ‘losing the battle’ to contain Ebola as the United Nations (UN) warned of severe food shortages in the hardest-hit countries.
MSF told a UN briefing in New York that world leaders were failing to address the epidemic and called for an urgent global biological disaster response to get aid and personnel to West Africa.
MSF international president, Joanne Liu, points out that, "Six months into the worst Ebola epidemic in history, the world is losing the battle to contain it. Leaders are failing to come to grips with this transnational threat."
To read the article titled, “World 'losing battle' to contain Ebola: MSF,” click here.Source:Sowetan Live
Malawi President, Peter Mutharika, says his country was the first to adopt a policy of putting all HIV positive pregnant and breast feeding women on anti-retroviral (ARV) drugs regardless of their CD4 Count.
Speaking at the signing of the Protect the Goal Campaign as a sign of commitment to the fight against HIV and AIDS, Mutharika argues that the policy has significantly reduced the number of children born with HIV and has taken Malawi closer to achieving an HIV free generation.
“Malawi has come a long way in the fight against HIV and AIDS. As a country, we have continued to scale up interventions that work. Already more than seven million people, almost half of the population of this country have been tested for HIV and have received their results,” he adds.
To read the article titled, “Malawi first country to put HIV positive pregnant women on ARVs - APM,” click here.Source:Malawi News Agency Online
Botswana's High Court orders the government to provide treatment to HIV-positive foreign prisoners at the state's expense.
Justice Bengbame Sechele, ruled that the denial of anti-retroviral (ARV) treatment to foreign inmates violated their rights.
The Botswana Network on Ethics, Law and HIV/AIDS supports the challenge against government policy, saying it violated the prisoners' constitutional right to equality, dignity and non-discrimination.
To read the article titled, “Botswana has to pay HIV treatment for foreigners,” click here.Source:News 24