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SOUTH AFRICA: No simple formula for universal access
3 August 2009 (PlusNews ), Nowhere is the goal of universal access to prevention, treatment and care more daunting than in South Africa, where an estimated 5.5 million people are living with HIV - the largest burden in the world.
SOUTH AFRICA: Jessica Standish-White, "In their minds, those boys do not have HIV."
31 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Jessica Standish-White is a senior student at St Mary's, a prestigious girls' school in one of Johannesburg's more affluent suburbs, where she organized an HIV testing drive. Standish-White, who is going to the University of Cape Town next year, told IRIN/PlusNews that some of her peers still think HIV can't happen to them.
SOUTH AFRICA: Boost for local AIDS research
29 July 2009 (PlusNews ), A government initiative to boost local HIV/AIDS research was launched in South Africa on Tuesday amid concerns about dwindling international funding for health research.
AFRICA: Male circumcision slowly taking off
23 July 2009 (PlusNews ), The World Health Organization endorsed male circumcision (MC) as an HIV-prevention measure two years ago, but implementation of large-scale male circumcision programmes has been relatively slow.
SOUTH AFRICA: Urgent action needed on TB, HIV co-infection
22 July 2009 (PlusNews ), South Africa's tuberculosis (TB) programme is improving: fewer people are defaulting on treatment, and the cure rate has increased, says a joint review by government and the World Health Organization (WHO).
GLOBAL: Treating addiction can prevent HIV
22 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Alcohol and drug addiction are major drivers of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in many parts of the world, but for political and ideological reasons, scientists and clinicians have tended to shy away from this area of HIV research, while governments and donors have been reluctant to fund programmes targeting addicts.
SOUTH AFRICA: Amanda Kubeka, "When it's a positive result ... it's not easy to tell the client"
21 July 2009 (PlusNews ), When Amanda Kubeka saw her cousins in Johannesburg, South Africa, struggling to cope with their newly diagnosed HIV infection, she decided to do something about it by volunteering at a local clinic. She is now a counsellor at the Emthonjeni voluntary testing and counselling centre at one of the city's busiest taxi ranks. She spoke to IRIN/PlusNews about what it is like to assist people through a test that could change their lives forever.
GLOBAL: Test and treat to wipe out AIDS
21 July 2009 (PlusNews ), The idea of using antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) not only to treat HIV infection but also to prevent new infections, and eventually to eradicate the virus almost entirely, is being hotly debated at the 5th International AIDS Society (IAS) Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention in Cape Town, South Africa, this week.
GLOBAL: Scientific community urged to become activists
20 July 2009 (PlusNews ), The 5th International AIDS Society (IAS) Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention opened on Sunday in Cape Town, South Africa, amidst reports that funding gaps and poor management are threatening supplies of life-prolonging antiretroviral (ARV) drugs in at least six African countries.
GLOBAL: Changes afoot for US global AIDS policy
20 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Just three weeks into his new appointment, United States Global AIDS Coordinator Dr Eric Goosby outlined on Monday some of the changes that President Barack Obama’s administration will make to the country's global AIDS policy at the 5th International AIDS Society (IAS) Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention in Cape Town, South Africa.
GLOBAL: Male circumcision does not reduce partner's HIV risk
17 July 2009 (PlusNews ), New research suggests that circumcising HIV-positive men does not reduce the risk of their female partners becoming HIV-infected.
GLOBAL: Critical need for more viral load testing
16 July 2009 (PlusNews ), New research has again confirmed the importance of viral load testing, which measures the amount of HI virus in the blood, to determine whether someone on antiretroviral (ARV) treatment is experiencing treatment failure and needs to be switched to a second-line drug regimen.
SOUTHERN AFRICA: The high cost of sex work
16 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Southern Africa's sex workers, denied access to HIV prevention and treatment services, are paying a high price to make a living when even government-issued condoms are not always free, according to a new report.
GLOBAL: As the money flows, so the world turns
15 July 2009 (PlusNews ), The stats are in – 2008 was a bumper year for HIV/AIDS funding, according to a new report by UNAIDS and the Kaiser Family Foundation, a non-profit organization that focuses on health. It is the kind of monitoring that may prove important as the global economic slowdown continues.
SOUTH AFRICA: Beverley Palesa Ditsie, "It's the most unsexy thing"
14 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Figuring out safe sex is hard enough, but if you are a woman who has sex with other women, no one is saying much about the methods available for preventing sexually transmitted infections. South African film director Beverley Palesa Ditsie spoke to IRIN/PlusNews about why she started using protection with her partners, and why more research on the risk of female-to-female HIV transmission is necessary.
SOUTH AFRICA: Lesbians and HIV - low risk is not no risk
14 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Women who sleep with women (WSW) are not at risk of HIV transmission – or are they? AIDS advocates warn that it is time for a wake-up call about who is and is not at risk.
SOUTH AFRICA: Sexual abuse behind bars
13 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Sexual abuse is widespread in South Africa's prisons, but the provision of health services to this vulnerable population remains problematic.
SOUTH AFRICA: TB prevalence in prison investigated
9 July 2009 (PlusNews ), Poor ventilation, overcrowding and HIV co-infection make prison an ideal breeding-ground for tuberculosis (TB), but a new study will be among the first in South Africa to quantify TB among inmates and personnel.
SOUTH AFRICA: Quality of health care depends on geography
7 July 2009 (PlusNews ), The quality of health care, including access to HIV prevention and testing services, depends to a large extent on which of South Africa's 52 districts you happen to live in.
SOUTH AFRICA: Condom stockouts threaten prevention efforts
6 July 2009 (PlusNews ), AIDS activists have reported that public health facilities in South Africa's Free State Province are experiencing serious shortages of condoms, with some clinics reporting complete stockouts.

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