Pretoria shifts HIV/AIDS policies

Cape Town- South Africa (PANA) -- The South African government on Tuesday announced that it will provide treatment for all HIV-positive babies in a significant policy shift for the country which has been ravaged by the pandemic.
From next year, all HIV-positive babies under 12 months will receive ARVs and mother-to-child transmission prevention will begin early in pregnancy.
In addition, patients with both HIV and tuberculosis will receive treatment earlier.
The new policy changes will help HIV patients "live longer and more fulfilling lives," President Jacob Zuma said in a statement to mark World AIDS Day.
In his nationally televised address, Zuma compared the fight against AIDS to the struggle against apartheid, saying: "The time comes in the life of any nation when there remain only two choices: submit or fight.
That time has now come in our struggle to overcome AIDS.
" South Africa has an estimated 5.
7 million people infected with HIV - more than any other country in the world.
Nearly 1, 000 South Africans die every day of AIDS-related diseases.

01 december 2009 21:21:00




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