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Opinion & Commentary

Effective HIV Prevention Programs Should Be Implemented More Widely in Africa, Letter to Editor Says

June 27, 2007

Although a recent Washington Post article "rightly pointed out that HIV continues to spread rapidly throughout much of Africa," it "would be a mistake to conclude that prevention programs don't work," David Serwadda and Salim Abdool Karim, both of the Global HIV Prevention Working Group, write in a Post letter to the editor. "Many HIV prevention interventions have been proved effective through rigorous scientific trials," the authors write. They add that no "single intervention is a magic bullet -- including programs to promote sexual monogamy and adult male circumcision -- but when deployed in combination, prevention efforts can have a huge impact."

However, "prevention programs have not been implemented on a sufficient scale in Africa -- meaning they do not reach enough people, with enough intensity, to curb the epidemic," Abdool Karim and Serwadda write. According to the authors, a "small fraction of Africans receive basic AIDS education or have access to condoms." They add that "just one in 10" HIV-positive women has access to the drugs that can prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission. "In addition, far too little has been done to address underlying factors that increase HIV risk -- such as poverty, gender inequalities and a lack of reproductive health care," the authors write. They conclude that a recent report from the working group found that "dramatically expanded prevention efforts could avert half of the 60 million infections projected to occur globally by 2015" (Serwadda/Abdool Karim, Washington Post, 6/27).

Back to other news for June 2007


Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/hiv. The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2007 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.



  
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
 
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