The life expectancy for women in Zimbabwe is 34 years, the lowest in the world, according to the World Health Organization's World Health Report 2006 released Friday, London's Telegraph reports (Thornycroft, Telegraph, 4/9). Men in Zimbabwe have a life expectancy of 37, according to the report, which used data from 2004, the most recent figures available (Reuters AlertNet, 4/7). WHO officials report the life expectancy for Zimbabwean women dropped by two years over a one-year period. BBC correspondents estimate this two-year drop is partly because of the country's HIV/AIDS epidemic (BBC News, 4/8). According to UNICEF, three infants in Zimbabwe contract HIV hourly, and the nation's official Herald newspaper reports that a lack of health workers limits access to HIV/AIDS treatment (IRIN News, 4/7). Many physicians also said the reduction in life expectancy is because of the failing health care system amid Zimbabwe's economic crisis (Telegraph, 4/9).
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