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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 20 other clinics in the Durban area. AHF expanded services to the Eastern Cape Province in 2008. It now supports 36 clinics in rural districts of the country’s poorest province. In 2016, AHF opened a state of the art clinic in Middledrift, Eastern Cape. In 2015, AHF launched services in Gauteng province, focusing on underserved communities like Heidelberg, expanding to 10 sites throughout the province in 2017. In 2017, AHF, in partnership with the Sex Worker Education and Advocacy Taskforce launched our first clinic in the Western Cape, bringing our supported sites to 75 throughout the country.
Through these sites, AHF South Africa offers 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 7.9 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 270,000 new HIV cases and over 110,000 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 runs Girls Act, a special program focusing on empowering youth with sexual and reproductive health and rights information, distributing sanitary pads, building self-esteem and encouraging girls to stay in school.
HSRC 2018 Survey Summary
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