HIV

TAC pickets Michael Mapongwana baby unit

“There is no privacy, you are asked in front of everyone what your baby's HIV status is. It is dirty and the staff is very disrespectful in the way they speak to patients. I don’t go to that clinic anymore; it’s been a year now. Because of their treatment I did something I shouldn’t have done, I tested my child for HIV myself, because I too work at a clinic.”

Mary-Anne Gontsana - 14 August 2014

South Africa leads in HIV prevention among gay groups

As homophobic discrimination continues to sweep across the African continent, we should be acutely mindful of the diverse ways it harms societies. While we are most aware of the direct effect homophobic physical violence has on sexual minority groups, it is also crucial that we be cognisant of the many insidious ways stigma and discrimination impact not only on sexual minorities but society at large.

Andrew Tucker - 11 August 2014

Treatment Action Campaign in a tavern

People should view taverns as part of the community, where young people can meet to enjoy themselves, and not as enemies, community activists told a meeting at the weekend of the Kuyasa branch of the Treatment Action Campaign.

Munda Kula - 5 August 2014

Activists call for fair employment conditions for community health workers

Community health workers (CHWs) are an essential link between communities and the often confusing health-care system. There are about 70,000 of them countrywide. They do a myriad tasks: visiting and assisting frail people at their homes, educating people about HIV and TB, and much more. But their conditions of employment are beset with problems.

Barbara Maregele - 9 July 2014

The week in political activism

This week we cover the availability of generic drug-resistant tuberculosis medication in Khayelitsha, a worldwide anti-corruption campaign taken up by Corruption Watch, a parents’ camp hosted by Equal Education, and an upcoming school infrastructure reform conference.

Michelle Korte - 3 July 2014

“˜A place where we ought to love one another’

Emasithandane home, founded in 1994 in Nyanga, currently looks after 39 children, most of them HIV infected and affected. 20 years later, it is still going strong despite financial constraints.

Bulelani Ngovi - 14 April 2014

Our Kind of People

In Our Kind of People, novelist Uzodinma Iweala reflects on the damaging misconceptions which shape the way the world sees HIV/AIDS in Africa.

Joshua Maserow - 7 April 2014

Beyond HIV: How we die in South Africa

Reports published this month by Stats SA and the Medical Research Council (MRC) provide interesting information on how South Africans are dying.

Nathan Geffen - 1 April 2014

South Africans living longer but drug-resistant TB a threat

Two government reports published in March show that the nation’s health is improving dramatically, but more people are getting sick from forms of tuberculosis that are difficult to treat.

Nathan Geffen - 31 March 2014

Are sugar daddies bad for your health?

“Sugar daddies destroy lives” say billboard adverts in Kwazulu-Natal in big bold black and red letters. The same message is echoed in radio adverts played across the country.

Nathan Geffen - 11 March 2014

Mother and daughter: alive, productive and healthy on antiretrovirals

Nandipha Madolo, from Khayelitsha’s Litha Park, has experienced much in her life, with HIV playing a major part. She watched her brother die from meningitis due to HIV. Her HIV-positive husband abused her. Her youngest daughter contracted HIV, and Madolo found out that she too was HIV-positive. But today Madolo has a healthy daughter, a steady job, and she is a public speaker.

Mary-Anne Gontsana - 29 January 2014

AIDS medicine stockouts put thousands at risk

South Africa’s anti-retroviral (ARV) treatment programme is often hailed as one of the most important public health successes. It is the world’s largest ARV programme, with over two million patients initiated on treatment. But it has serious problems: many patients often go without medicines because of stockouts.

Koketso Moeti - 28 November 2013

Having a different HIV status to your partner

Lindiwe Kameni was ill in 2004. “I was in Jo’burg when I fell sick, and I tested HIV-positive”, she says. She told her husband her HIV status and things started to change.

Odwa Funeka - 28 October 2013

HIV vaccine: some progress, but we’re not there yet

While antiretroviral drugs against HIV are getting more effective and allow HIV-positive people to live longer, the ultimate prize is to find a way to cure people of the virus, the best hope being a vaccine.

Kerry Gordon - 9 October 2013

When the solution compounds the problem

In April 2012, the Eastern Cape Department of Health (ECDoH) put in place a moratorium on the appointment of healthcare workers to vacant posts at facilities throughout the province. This moratorium was instituted in an attempt to control the chronic overspending that was pushing the department deeper into financial crisis each year.

Daygan Eagar - 11 September 2013

A Tale of Rural Health

The failing healthcare system in the Eastern Cape affects everyone: urban communities, migrants from Gauteng and Cape Town too sick to work anymore or returning home to retire, and healthcare workers who don’t have the medicines, equipment and a functioning referral system, to offer the care their patients need.

Marije Versteeg - 11 September 2013