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SOUTH AFRICA: When a microbicide trial goes wrong - Part 1
9 October 2007 (PlusNews ), A telephone call on a Friday afternoon. That's how South African researcher Dr Roshini Govinden found out about a major setback in the field of microbicide research this year. The clinical trial she was head of in the country's east-coast KwaZulu-Natal Province would have to be stopped after results showed that the risk of HIV infection could increase.
SOUTH AFRICA: Hospital project attempts to revive Johannesburg inner city
3 October 2007 (PlusNews ), A new focus on healthcare in South Africa's most densely populated inner-city suburb, is to help regenerate a community hard hit by HIV/AIDS, poverty and crime.
SOUTH AFRICA: The trials and tribulations of community involvement in research
27 September 2007 (PlusNews ), Francinah Ndala, pastor and chairperson of the township Ladies Forum, is no ordinary member of the community; she is a statuesque woman with a slightly intimidating air, who proclaims that "when I talk, everybody listens". Altogether an ideal candidate to participate in the community advisory group for microbicide clinical trials in Soshanguve, a township outside South Africa's capital, Pretoria.
GLOBAL: Vaccine failure a setback for anti-AIDS efforts
24 September 2007 (PlusNews ), News that one of the most promising and advanced HIV vaccine trials has been halted has dealt a serious blow to global AIDS prevention efforts.
SOUTHERN AFRICA: A winning recipe for PMTCT but few follow it
19 September 2007 (PlusNews ), A success story, at last: Botswana has lowered the rate of mother-to-child transmission of HIV to less than four percent, coming close to developed countries that have almost eliminated paediatric AIDS.
SOUTHERN AFRICA: The effect of migration on HIV rates
13 September 2007 (PlusNews ), Trying to measure the impact of the Zimbabwean exodus on HIV/AIDS rates in the region is so fraught with ifs, buts and maybes that the only reasonable assumption is that, like other migrants, economic migrants may run a higher risk of infection than they would have if they had not left their homes.
SOUTH AFRICA: Vaccine trial volunteers contributing to AIDS fight
10 September 2007 (PlusNews ), Although scientists hope that a vaccine will eventually offer the best protection against HIV infection, the complex biology of the virus has posed constant challenges and even a partially effective vaccine is still some years away.
SOUTH AFRICA: Condom recall hurts prevention drive
29 August 2007 (PlusNews ), The lives of millions of South Africans could be at risk, as South Africa's health department recalls 20 million government condoms and scrambles to do damage control after allegations of corruption in the country's quality-assurance and standards body.
SOUTH AFRICA: "I'm in danger" - public responds to condom scandal
29 August 2007 (PlusNews ), The recall of 20 million condoms by the South African Health Department due to safety concerns has dealt a blow to the country's prevention programme.
SOUTH AFRICA: New report confirms nutrition no substitute for treatment
22 August 2007 (PlusNews ), There is no evidence that better nutrition can substitute for antiretroviral (ARV) treatment, a new report has found. These findings might seem unremarkable anywhere else in the world, but not in South Africa, where the issue of nutrition has been tainted by a damaging debate that has tended to frame it as an alternative to ARVs.
SOUTH AFRICA: Deputy health minister 'sacked for doing her job'
10 August 2007 (PlusNews ), South African deputy health minister, Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge, told a media briefing in Cape Town on Friday that President Thabo Mbeki sacked her for "just doing my job."
SOUTH AFRICA: Government encouraged by latest HIV figures
2 August 2007 (PlusNews ), After a steep increase in the 1990s, and several years of plateauing, South Africa's HIV prevalence may finally have entered a phase of decline.
SOUTH AFRICA: Positive mothers, children need more to reach MDGs
23 July 2007 (PlusNews ), Paediatric AIDS and the prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) are still stumbling blocks as South Africa hits the halfway mark in its race to meet the 2015 deadline for the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), but a new paediatric AIDS plan may be a way of reaching the finish line on time.
SOUTH AFRICA: Trying to plug the brain drain
13 July 2007 (PlusNews ), A groundbreaking move by South Africa's health department could see nurses being paid at least 20 percent more, becoming the first beneficiaries of a plan to attract more healthcare students and keep homegrown skills home with higher salaries.
GLOBAL: Women want a bigger piece of the funding pie
10 July 2007 (PlusNews ), After burning the midnight oil for many weeks while preparing a US$50 million gender-based project proposal to lay before the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria, Swazi activists found that it had vanished from their country's grant application. They were dumbfounded.
GLOBAL: Global forum for women with HIV
5 July 2007 (PlusNews ), AIDS does not only travel with truckers along African highways; it flies business class with men in dark suits, crawls into marriages and lurks in playgrounds. It smiles at you every day at work and, disproportionately, affects African women and girls because of gender inequalities.
SOUTH AFRICA: Quackery hinders AIDS treatment efforts
2 July 2007 (PlusNews ), 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.
SOUTH AFRICA: Business booming for untested AIDS remedies
2 July 2007 (PlusNews ), "A powerful immune booster" proclaims a large advertisement in the window of a downtown pharmacy in Johannesburg, South Africa. The product, called Qina, sells for R120 [US$17] in bottles labelled "clinically proven". HIV and AIDS top the list of diseases it claims to alleviate.
SOUTH AFRICA: Cervical cancer vaccine offers distant hope
19 June 2007 (PlusNews ), Two new vaccines that protect women against cervical cancer could save thousands of lives in sub-Saharan Africa, where most cases of cervical cancer go undetected until they are too far advanced to treat. The vaccines hold particular promise for women who contract HIV and become more susceptible to the human papilloma virus (HPV), the sexually transmitted infection that can cause cervical cancer.
SOUTH AFRICA: Mortality figures point to AIDS toll
15 June 2007 (PlusNews ), Deaths are on the rise in South Africa, with the latest government mortality figures showing a 3.3 percent increase between 2004 and 2005.

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