IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 229, 15 April 2005
Monday 12 September 2005
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IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 229, 15 April 2005


[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]


NEWS:

AFRICA: New thinking needed to counter AIDS in rural communities
AFRICA: WHO conference focuses on nutrition and HIV/AIDS
LESOTHO: First ever national PWA network finally gets off the ground
SOUTH AFRICA: Voices of mothers on preventing HIV transmission
TANZANIA: HIV infections rate declines, official says
ETHIOPIA: Serious challenges facing HIV/AIDS fight - US report
GHANA: HIV/AIDS on decline for first time in 5 years, survey shows

LINKS:

1. Action for West Africa Region: Reproductive Health (AWARE-RH)

CONFERENCES/ EVENTS/ RESEARCH/ RESOURCES:

JOB OPPORTUNITIES:



AFRICA: New thinking needed to counter AIDS in rural communities

The link between HIV/AIDS and hunger in rural communities has received a great deal of attention over the past few years - particularly in Southern Africa, where HIV/AIDS has added a new dimension to the recent food crisis.

But research emerging from this week's international conference on 'HIV/AIDS and Food and Nutrition Security' in Durban, South Africa, showed that very little is know about the actual impact of the pandemic on rural communities.

The three-day conference, organised by the Washington-based International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), brings together policymakers, donors and researchers to develop strategies for improving and expanding the response to HIV/AIDS and food security.

More details



AFRICA: WHO conference focuses on nutrition and HIV/AIDS

As the global drive to provide anti-AIDS drugs to Africa's HIV-positive citizens gains momentum, antiretrovirals (ARVs) are now taking centre stage, overshadowing all other treatment efforts.

It has long been recognised that good nutrition is essential for strengthening the immune systems of people living with HIV/AIDS, but nutrition remains a source of confusion and controversy on the continent.

People living with HIV/AIDS have been swamped by a flood of nutritional supplements, immune boosters and herbal remedies - some even claiming to cure the disease.

More details



LESOTHO: First ever national PWA network finally gets off the ground

Over the past few weeks, people living with HIV/AIDS (PWA) in Lesotho have been preparing for the launch of their long-anticipated national network - the first in the tiny mountain kingdom.

Although the need for a body to coordinate and represent Lesotho's various PWA structures has long been recognised, little had been done about it until a technical working group was established last year, UNAIDS Country Coordinator Tim Rwabuhemba told PlusNews.

Since then, the working group - bringing together various sets of HIV-positive Basotho and NGOs - has been responsible for much of the legwork in setting up the network.

More details



SOUTH AFRICA: Voices of mothers on preventing HIV transmission

It's been three years since the courts ordered the South African government to provide nevirapine to HIV-positive pregnant women in public health facilities, but very little is known about the experiences of the HIV-positive women on the programme.

The country's controversial prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programme has received widespread media coverage over the past few years, largely focusing on the conflict between AIDS activists and the government, and hardly featuring the voices of those directly affected.

New research into the challenges facing mothers living with HIV/AIDS - conducted by the University of Witwatersrand's HIV/AIDS and the Media project - found that "the prevailing climate around HIV/AIDS is still one of secrecy", and many women on the programme were failing to disclose their status, fearing rejection and isolation.

More details



TANZANIA: HIV infection rate declines, official says

A Tanzanian official announced on Friday that the rate of HIV infections in the country had declined from 10 percent in 2002 to 7 percent in 2003-04, with more infections in urban areas than in the countryside.

"Tanzanians living in cities are more likely to be infected with HIV than their rural counterparts," said Herman Lupogo, executive chairman of the Tanzania Commission for AIDS (TACAIDS).

He made the remarks when he disclosed the results of a survey conducted by TACAIDS and financed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

More details



ETHIOPIA: Serious challenges facing HIV/AIDS fight - US report

Ethiopia is facing serious challenges in overcoming its HIV/AIDS epidemic, according to a report released by the US President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) in the capital, Addis Ababa, on Wednesday.

"The key challenge is to help men and women move beyond pervasive stigma and denial," said the brief - a first-year progress report for the five-year strategy, launched in Ethiopia in 2004.

In addition to entrenched stigma and discrimination, poor health care access and a lack of water and electricity in some areas were listed as key constraints.

More details



GHANA: HIV/AIDS on decline for first time in 5 years, survey shows

Ghana's HIV/AIDS infection rate has dropped for the first time in five years, and is now down countrywide to 3.1 percent from 3.6 percent in 2003, according to a new sentinel survey released this week.

But officials in Ghana, whose population of 20 million has one of the lowest HIV rates in West Africa, remain concerned by big regional differences and increasing signs of unprotected sex among youths.

The survey shows a fall in HIV infection rates in 14 of the 35 areas registered. In the south, Ghana's most populous area and the one hardest hit by the pandemic, six sentinel sites had a prevalence rate of five percent, against eight sites in 2003.

More details



LINKS:

1. Action for West Africa Region Reproductive Health and Child Survival Project - a five-year, USAID-sponsored health improvement project that began in 2003 - has launched its new web site.

Among other capacity-building activities, the site, which is managed by EngenderHealth, aims to improve reproductive, maternal and child healthcare services, strengthen malaria prevention and treatment, and integrate reproductive health and HIV/AIDS prevention in 18 West African countries.

[ENDS]




 
Recent AFRICA Reports
Donation drought at Global Fund replenishment conference,  9/Sep/05
IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 250, 9 September 2005,  9/Sep/05
Virginity testing - absence of a small tissue becomes big issue ,  8/Sep/05
HIV/AIDS eroding region's development, says UN report,  7/Sep/05
IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 249, 3 September 2005,  2/Sep/05
Links
AIDS Media Center
Le portail d'informations générales de la Côte d’Ivoire
VIH Internet
Sida Info Services
Aides

PlusNews does not take responsibility for info in links supplied.


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