Fewer pregnant women with HIV in Congo

BRAZZAVILLE, 18 January 2013 (PlusNews Global) - The HIV infection rate has declined among pregnant women in the Republic of Congo from 3.4 percent in 2009 to 2.8 percent in 2012, according to a study by the Ministry of Health, which said it had taken specific action to help this section of the population. full report

KENYA: Integration of PMTCT and maternal and child health gets results

NAIROBI/NDHIWA, 19 December 2012 (PlusNews Global) - Health programmes integrating services for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV into regular maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) clinics, rather than operating PMTCT services as stand-along programmes, are showing positive results in Kenya, experts say. full report

SWAZILAND: Child marriages banned

MBABANE, 20 September 2012 (PlusNews Global) - The practice of men marrying underage girls - which has been an accepted social norm for centuries but has been linked in recent years to the spread of HIV - was recently declared illegal in Swaziland. full report

UGANDA: Government adopts new PMTCT strategy

KAMPALA, 14 September 2012 (PlusNews Global) - The government of Uganda has launched the UN World Health Organization's (WHO) "Option B+" to boost the prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT). full report

KENYA: Cash payments reduce risky behaviour

NAIROBI, 7 September 2012 (PlusNews Global) - Cash transfer programmes not only improve nutrition, education and health benefits for orphans and vulnerable children, but new research now suggest that these programmes can also significantly reduce risky sexual behaviour and HIV infection. full report

ETHIOPIA: Safe water critical to health of HIV-positive people

ADDIS ABABA, 27 August 2012 (PlusNews Global) - Beletu Hailemariam, 32, is HIV-positive and knows she should avoid contracting opportunistic infections that could further compromise her immune system. But she lives in one of poorer suburbs of Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa, and has to share a toilet with dozens of people and walk long distances to access clean water. A year ago, she was diagnosed with typhoid. full report

UGANDA: Children's HIV treatment must improve

KAMPALA, 9 August 2012 (PlusNews Global) - HIV activists have called on the Ugandan government to urgently address the rollout of paediatric HIV treatment; just 26 percent of children who need the life-prolonging antiretroviral drugs have access to them, compared to 55 percent of adults. full report

SOUTH AFRICA: Mother-to-child HIV transmission still falling

WASHINGTON DC, 23 July 2012 (PlusNews Global) - South Africa has charted a significant decline in mother-to-child HIV transmission for the second consecutive year, with new data showing that just 2.7 percent of babies born to HIV-positive mums contracted the virus at six weeks of age, compared to 8 percent in 2008. full report

HIV/AIDS: Better paediatric HIV formulations

WASHINGTON DC, 23 July 2012 (PlusNews Global) - Fewer babies are being born HIV-positive, but treatment for the more than three million children living with HIV remains under-researched and underfunded. As part of efforts to boost access to paediatric HIV treatment, researchers are getting creative, moving to better pills, kid-friendly treatment "sprinkles", micro-tabs and even medicine-dispensing pacifiers. full report

INDONESIA: Condom controversy continues

JAKARTA, 20 July 2012 (PlusNews Global) - Rizki, 29, is wooing passers-by outside a bar in a red-light district near Jakarta, the Indonesian capital. In her five years as a commercial sex worker she has always urged clients to use a condom to avoid HIV infection. "About 70 percent of my customers use condoms," she said. "Some men get angry when I ask, but most comply." full report
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