Integrating Rapid Syphilis and HIV Testing for Pregnant Women Could Reduce Maternal, Child Morbidity and Mortality
September 1, 2011
"A study conducted in Uganda and Zambia by the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF) found high rates of syphilis and HIV co-infection among pregnant women in both countries," but showed that "integrating rapid syphilis screening and HIV testing for pregnant women was feasible, cost-effective, and helped to prevent transmission of syphilis and HIV from mother-to-child," PlusNews reports.
"Like HIV, syphilis is a major cause of morbidity and mortality among women and children in developing countries," the news service writes, noting that the EGPAF study found that 14.3 percent of syphilis-positive pregnant women in Uganda also tested positive for HIV and 24.2 percent tested HIV-positive in Zambia. "The study's findings convinced Zambia's health ministry to include rapid syphilis testing in its standard package of PMCT [prevention of mother-to-child transmission] services and antenatal care, said Ministry of Health spokesperson, Reuben Kamoto Mbewe," PlusNews reports (9/1).
This information was reprinted from kff.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report, search the archives, and sign up for email delivery. © Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.
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