South African Health Ministry: AIDS Could Destroy the Trucking Industry
August 19, 2003
The trucking industry -- a cornerstone of South Africa's economy -- could be completely destroyed by HIV/AIDS, officials said Monday. "The percentage of infected drivers compared with the rest of the population is much, much higher," said Deputy Director General of the Health Department Nthari Matsau. Although statistics are unreliable, Matsau said it is estimated that over half of drivers are HIV-infected, and the number is growing daily. The Health Ministry plans to integrate the government's policy with those of the Truckers Union, car manufacturer Toyota, and religious groups, among others. A combined effort of treatment, education, and prevention aims to decrease the spread of STDs by 20 percent by October 2004. Herman Lemmer, CEO of the Road Freight Association, said he was optimistic that free treatment and further education for drivers could be possible within a year.Adapted from:
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.