HIV rises among pregnant women

2011-11-29 15:38

Pretoria - The HIV-prevalence among pregnant women in the country has increased from 29.4% to 30.2%, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said in Pretoria on Tuesday.

"We're still far from winning the war, but we are getting somewhere," Motsoaledi said, releasing the National Antenatal Sentinel HIV and Syphilis Prevalence survey. It was made public eight months later than expected.

Motsoaledi said there was a high degree of stabilisation in the percentage increase of pregnant women between ages 16 to 24 who were infected. However there had been an upward spike between the ages of 24 and 39.

He applauded prevention methods addressing the younger ages as reasons why the numbers had stayed within the "confidence interval".

In the last five years, the department had set a target of prevalence estimates between 29.4 and 30.9%.

ARVs, counselling

He attributed the high HIV prevalence in the older category to a lack of ARVs and counselling.

"We must accept the number of people on ARVs as we need to... decrease infections," he said.

According to the survey, KwaZulu-Natal still had the highest prevalence of HIV-infected pregnant women, while the Northern and Western Cape were the lowest.

While the figures were still within the government's parameters, Motsoaledi said it would still continue to increase its ARV rollout and HIV/Aids prevention strategies.

"As many pregnant women as possible must be on ARVs," he said.

"We believe our prevention methods might be reaching stability. With the younger ones the prevention methods may be working," said Motsoaledi.

The department was obliged to release a report of nationwide HIV prevalence rates every year. So far, the annual release of the report had been late every year, Democratic Alliance spokesperson Mike Waters said in a statement on Monday.

The party had intended submitting an application in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act if the report was not released within 10 days.

  • Mandla - 2011-11-29 15:45

    And he's applauding....

      Racial_Inequality_OverUnderprivileged - 2011-11-29 16:00

      This is terrible.

      Michael - 2011-11-29 16:26

      where's a full report? i'm more interested in the whole report not just women prevalence, how prevalent is it among men? which prevince is the second most infected and third most? per race,per year,age per race, comparison for the last 5 years. News24 give us a more sensible table of comparison not this thing.

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-11-29 16:39

      Certainly nothing to brag about, its an incredibly high infection rate. I guess if Youth Leagues and such focussed more on developing positive habits amongst the youth instead of obsessing about politics, people could be taught to be responsible. Social grants have also had the negative affect of girls purposefully falling pregnant thus not using protection, in order to get their hands on "free" money. And the money is meant to look after children, but is rather used as an income without working. The whole thing is leading to a social catastrophe.

      Philisiwe Msomi - 2011-11-29 16:40

      numbers r inreasin bt da minister says we r gettin somewhe!i think he wsn't qouted correctly or some details wer left out!,eg if on the stats a year before increase ws 10perc, n this year is 2perc he can say dat we r getting somewhere!

      Walter - 2011-11-29 17:57

      Only a South African Minister can come out with such rubbish like "We are getting somewhere" or "As many pregnant women as possible must be on ARVs". Almost a third of pregnant women being HIV+ is just scary as hell and behaviour by both men and women must change, offering more ARVs is not the solution, Minister! I wonder how many of these mothers will be around to celebrate their child's 18th birthday...

  • Sidima - 2011-11-29 15:49

    "He attributed the high HIV prevalence in the older category to a lack of ARVs and counselling" - WTF? will providing the with ARV's reduce the prevalence? "While the figures were still within the government's parameters" - Really? 30.2% is within our Gov parameters? No wonder our people are dying.

  • Deon - 2011-11-29 15:54

    It does not sound that we are getting anywhere, no wonder the report is 8 months late.

  • Pierre - 2011-11-29 16:00

    ....from 29.4% to 30.2%...........We're still far from winning the war, but we are getting somewhere," Motsoaledi said Getting somewhere ? oh please you are loosing wake up the stats are worse than before.

      Irene - 2011-11-29 16:26

      That's exactly what I was going to say. This dude obviously doesn't understand statistics.

  • Maai - 2011-11-29 16:10

    Evolution (survival of the fittest) at work.

  • richard.hipkin - 2011-11-29 16:21

    If you don't get the fact by now that unprotected sex makes you pregnant and susceptible to sexually transmitted diseases then you either really stupid or arrogant. Either way you live with the consequences.. Although, saying that, it would be interesting to see what percentage of these are from sexual assault, these poor women now have to live with the consequences of that for the rest of their lives which is completely unfair.

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-11-29 16:46

      We all end up living with the consequences. Thousands of orphans to look after, and they grow up without proper discipline and parenting - so they'll end up being criminals etc. A long term social disaster in the making. But politicians focus on infighting for power instead of dealing with the issue - its their fault. They don't govern this country.

  • Larry - 2011-11-29 16:34

    If this is true, it is a disgusting situation. Safe Sex and Aids drugs have been poured into the country, ever since Mbeki and his German herbalist were kicked out. Surely this disease should be under control by now? It show a large portion of the population is just not taking this seriously. No wonder that funding from International donors is drying up.

  • ErnaJacobs - 2011-11-29 16:44

    omw!!! 30%% Where were the days when it was around 10%? Winning? In what universe.

  • Monique - 2011-11-29 17:15

    Shocking that he feels they are getting somewhere. I feel when a woman is tested HIV positive they should sterilize her - what is going to happen to the poor children when they are ten years old and without a mother (most of the times without a father too)!

  • Tshivhombela Fhatuwani - 2011-11-29 19:05

    I commented objectively and still comments are deleted, why? Can you please give me my freedom of expression before the Info Bill legimatised. My comments are non-prejudicial, non-stereotypical, non-racial & non-aggressive. Two comments have been already deleted today on different articles.

  • Samuel - 2011-11-30 10:09

    Remind me pls, How do one get aids? and how do one get pregnant? anay conection? Jes/No

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  • Cuteandbronzed - 2012-05-31 19:26

    This says something about the society we live in, Im tired of people blaming the goverment because HIV is on the rise in any situation, Im sorry but we should take responsiblity for ourselves. So what does it say, that are some people in this society that still think there immune to HIV, I hate this like dont we see the bill boards? As a people we should be doing better, I mean the Goverment cant be standing next to you before your about to have sex and tell you to be careful honestly some people should grow up. Its thier lives they should take responsibility

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