HIV/AIDS in Zimbabwe Has Reduced Life Expectancy, Not Affecting Population Growth, Study Says
August 29, 2007
HIV/AIDS has reduced the life expectancy in Zimbabwe, but the country's overall population growth remains unchanged as births continue to outpace deaths, according to a study recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Reuters reports.
According to Reuters, the purpose of the study was to test the accuracy of a 1989 World Health Organization study that estimated population growth rates in sub-Saharan Africa would become negative because of HIV/AIDS. Gregson said the 1989 estimates were inaccurate because researchers at the time did not realize that behavior contributing to the spread of the virus differed within populations and that transmission rates and other factors changed during the stages of infection. "The prevalence of HIV has been coming down in the last few years, and as more people receive treatment, we hope the death rate will also soon start to go down," Gregson said, adding that the effects of the HIV/AIDS epidemic are "substantial and still unfolding." Gregson said the new findings likely are representative of trends in other parts of Africa (Kahn, Reuters, 8/27).
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.