By Professor Salim S. Abdool Karim & Professor Quarraisha Abdool Karim – AIDS Conferences are unique in being a cross between a scientific meeting and a community engagement forum. People from all walks of life attend these meetings and they are a far cry from the usual rigid structure in scientific conferences in order to cater for the range of interests.
By Sharonann Lynch – Viral load testing measures the amount of HIV virus (HIV RNA) in a person’s blood. It is the optimal method for identifying antiretroviral therapy (ART) treatment failure (defined as an HIV viral load greater than 1000 copies/mL), because it is more sensitive and has a higher positive predictive value than CD4 cell count and other clinical indicators.
By Professor Linda-Gail Bekker & Professor Robin Wood – The June 2000 UNAIDS global report on AIDS painted a sombre picture: already South Africa had the greatest number of people living with HIV than any other country in the world and life expectancy had fallen rapidly to historical levels.
By Professor Glenda Gray & Professor James A. McIntyre – HIV changed the nature of health in South Africa as our new democracy emerged. Seemingly overnight, in front of our eyes, young people and children died in unprecedented numbers. HIV slashed life expectancy, wiped out a generation of economically active adults in their prime across sub-Saharan Africa, reversed gains in under-five mortality and created a cohort of AIDS orphans.
Over the years, HIV and the ensuing global epidemic has resulted in millions of deaths. With the advent of antiretroviral therapy, and the advocacy efforts of civil society, HIV-related mortality has significantly decreased, as has mother-to-child transmission.
By Vuyiseka Dubula – I was just months away from knowing my own HIV status when, in the year 2000, the people took over the streets of Durban marking a revolution to come. Although I was not present in Durban for that year’s AIDS conference – I was already connected to the struggle.
By Professor Hoosen Coovadia – I was thrust into the vortex of International AIDS Society’s 13th International AIDS conference in 2000 as chairperson by my close colleagues Professor Quarraisha Abdool-Karim and Dr Gustaaf Wolvaardt, presumably due to the absence of any suitable alternatives, because of my academic record (such as it was at that time) and my leadership roles in the struggle for freedom.
Dr Fareed Abdullah & Kanya Ndaki – As the global HIV community returns to South Africa for the International AIDS Conference, there is no better time to take stock of the progress the country has made.
By Professor Chris Beyrer, Professor Linda-Gail Bekker & Professor Françoise Barré-Sinoussi There has been remarkable progress in the AIDS response. We have come a long way since the 13th International…
By Ntsiki Mpulo – Health minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi sat down with Spotlight in an exclusive interview. He shares details on how the department plans to target vulnerable groups in efforts to stem the incidence of HIV. He speaks passionately on plans to target adolescents, a little less forceful on decriminalizing sex work and is thin on detail when it comes to men who have sex with men.
By Justice Edwin Cameron – It has been almost 35 years since AIDS was identified. Thirty-five long years, since the disquieting realisation that young men in North America, in the prime of their lives, were dying from a hitherto unknown virus.