4.6 million take HIV test in SA

2010-12-01 16:12

Johannesburg - More than 4.6 million South Africans took an HIV test since April, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe said at a World Aids Day event in Mpumalanga on Wednesday.

Of this number 800 000 (17%) tested positive for HIV, Motlanthe said, according to a copy of his speech.

The 4.6 million were part of a group of 5.5 million people who received counselling for HIV, and chose to be tested. President Jacob Zuma launched a national HIV counselling and testing campaign in April.

The 2010 testing rate was an improvement of over 500% compared with that of 2009, where there had been no such campaign, he said.

Motlanthe told the gathering, held in Mkhondo, that the theme of last year's World Aids Day was "I am responsible". This year the focus was on collective responsibility.

"It means that friends, colleagues and families should talk about HIV in their workplaces, homes and communities and take appropriate action to care for those infected and affected."

He said at last year's World Aids Day Zuma announced all HIV positive pregnant women with a CD4 count of 350 or less would begin antiretroviral (ARV) treatment. All HIV positive infants would start ARV treatment regardless of their CD4 count. All HIV and TB co-infected patients would start ARV treatment at a CD4 count of 350 and less.

200 000 new patients on ARVs

To achieve the above Motlanthe said more public health facilities were accredited to provide ARV treatment, and more than 3 126 nurses had since been trained to initiate patients on treatment.

He provided further statistics about the administration of treatment.

"More than 200 000 new patients have been initiated on ARVs since April this year, bringing a total number of up to a million people on ARVs.

"Between April and September this year 20 000 pregnant women were initiated on ARV treatment, compared to 15 000 during the same period last year. This represents a 28% increase in 2010 compared to 2009. This will help reduce the number of babies born with HIV."

Speaking at the same event, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said prevention was the main weapon in the fight against HIV/Aids in the country.

As part of prevention measures, the health department planned to increase the distribution of male and female condoms and promote male circumcision.

  • Arthur Phili - 2010-12-01 21:46

    Peter Mokaba, the HIV denialist and song writer. Ironic that he achieved genocide, but against his own people.

  • Ockert - 2010-12-02 13:40

    Who is paying for these tests ?, surely it's not for free, and are the same people having them selves tested over and over again - to check if they have become negative ?, surely if you mess around you should expect to pick up diseases, maybe it's a culture "thing" ? with the leader of our country setting the example on how to BEHAVE. But this whole exercise is costing Mega Bucks to the TAX PAYER.

  • Mo_Afrika - 2010-12-02 14:14

    im sure our health department does not do any research. There a lot of documentaries that talks different in case of this so called HIV. A lot of world top researches say there has never been a finding of HI Virus isolated and identifiedas solo, the test that is there is one that test probabilities of a viruses that reacts when testing and speculations are made that a person might be positive simply cos of the reaction of the test and to make it worse, anything else can be mistaken for that virus including pregnancy...Geeze can there be more infomation provided please and more research from our health department

  • Zulgin - 2010-12-02 22:06

    Why is this country so obsesses with HIV aids, human population is our biggest problem and we actually encourage HIV positive people to have children? Its a necessity to keep the population under control - we can do with a lot less idiots who don't know how to use a condom by now, not to mention that the tax payer has to pay for these tests and condoms. I say let them fuck themselves to extinction.

      johnnyfilm - 2010-12-03 10:09

      burn in hell shit head. you have obviously never been in an aids orphanage or been near someone who is dying from this disease. be careful what you wish for prick!

      goyougoodthing - 2011-02-21 14:18

      That's a bit heavy dude. The Orphans out there didn't ask for their parents to die or infect them. And what is happening is that we are inheriting an entire generation of parent-less kids and young adults. Not always true but 9 times out of 10 a child without proper support emotionally and financially will be a mess. Heck most middle class children are a mess. So when a young South African comes up to you, shoots you or hurts a family member remember that your wishes may have helped this young person be the criminal you resent the most. Being stupid about sex is one thing, but wishing death and all that goes with it... jeepers don't be so cruel. Unless of course you are happy to foster all these children.

  • goyougoodthing - 2011-02-21 14:12

    That's like 20% infection. Amazingly, since having an HIV test for insurance 15 years ago, I haven't been worried since about it. I was 20 at the time and had partners so could not be 100% sure I was fine. 15 years later, no bonking around and... never worried again. If they keep their trousers on then the average SAffa would be the same.

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