Two years after it was announced that the ARV dolutegravir would become part of standard first line HIV treatment in South Africa, it is finally reaching significant numbers of people. But new research about a worrying side-effect, weight gain (particularly in women), has muddied its otherwise stellar reputation.
The COVID-19 pandemic and South Africa’s national lockdown has exacerbated existing challenges the LGBTQI+ community and sex workers experience in accessing sexual and reproductive healthcare services. Tiyese Jeranji reports.
Under COVID-19 lockdowns in South Africa and elsewhere, many public services have been interrupted, including sexual and reproductive health services. Thuthukile Mbatha considers the heavy toll these interruptions have taken on people’s lives.
New data points to fears of contracting COVID-19 at congested health facilities as the primary reason for people not seeking needed care and defaulting on their chronic medication, including HIV treatment. Amy Green reports.
People living with HIV and other chronic conditions should be urgently supported to reduce contact with health facilities both for “social distancing” purposes as well as saving healthcare worker capacity for those with the greatest immediate need, argues Lynne Wilkinson and Anna Grimsrud.
Last year KwaZulu-Natal celebrated three districts’ achievement of the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets. But celebrations may have been premature, as new data shows that no district in KZN in fact met the targets. Spotlight visited one of the districts to investigate.
A new antiretroviral medicine called dolutegravir is about to be introduced in the public healthcare system. Dr Tom Boyles outlines seven things people may want to consider before switching to the new drug.
By Dr Michelle Moorhouse – Antiretroviral therapy (ART) in South Africa seems set for a revolution with a new drug combination that is highly effective and involves only one pill a day that is smaller than an aspirin. One of South Africa’s top HIV clinicians explains.
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.