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South Africa became home to AHF’s first treatment centre outside the U.S. with the establishment of the Ithembalabantu (People’s Hope) clinic in the Durban township of Umlazi in 2002, through a partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health. In addition to Ithembalabantu, AHF now supports 60 other clinics in the Eastern Cape, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.
Through these sites, AHF South Africa comprehensive HIV and tuberculosis (TB) testing, treatment and care. Nationwide services include antiretroviral medication, CD4 and viral load testing, lab monitoring, treatment of opportunistic infections, on-site pharmacy services, distribution of free condoms to the public, and community outreach programs to test the population for HIV and link those who test positive into care.
South Africa carries the world’s heaviest HIV/AIDS burden with 7.5 million* people living with HIV and prevalence rates lingering at 18.9% of the population. The most recent Human Science Research Council Prevalence, Incidence, Behaviour and Communication study, released in July 2018 estimated that there were 222,000* new HIV cases and over 115,000* AIDS-related deaths last year alone, with TB ranked as the leading cause of death in the country.
Young women and girls are disproportionately affected by HIV in South Africa with HIV prevalence among 20- to- 24-year-olds is three times higher among females (15.6%) than males (4.8%). This is why AHF South Africa a runs the Style-Up Youth campaign, a special programme focusing on empowering youth with information about sexual and reproductive health and rights, substance abuse, unplanned pregnancy and gender-based violence. The programme has to components: Girls Act which distributes sanitary pads and hygiene packs, builds self-esteem and encourages girls to stay in school; and Boys2Men which distributed hygiene packs and promotes positive masculinity, enrols boys for voluntary medical male circumcision and encourages condom use.
HSRC 2018 Survey Summary
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