Last year, Spotlight reported that taking a widely available antibiotic, doxycycline after condomless sex can reduce the risk of contracting three different sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Elri Voigt unpacks some further results from three studies presented at CROI2023 on Doxycycline as post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) for STI prevention.
In an open letter to young women in South Africa, Faith Fikizolo reminds us that meaningful comprehensive sex education is an important lever in ensuring girls and young women are fully empowered to exercise their sexual and reproductive health rights. She argues that, due to the lack of meaningful sexuality education, many South African young women and girls lack bodily autonomy.
As a rebellious teenager growing up in the British town of Harpenden, Professor Helen Rees would sneak out to attend anti-apartheid talks. Today, she is a renowned scientist and chair of South Africa’s medicines regulator. Biénne Huisman chatted to Rees about her career, prioritising women’s reproductive health, and her role at the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority.
Unsafe sex, interpersonal violence, high body mass index, high systolic blood pressure, and alcohol consumption are the top risk factors for disease and death in South Africa, according to the Second Comparative Risk Assessment study conducted by the South African Medical Research Council’s Burden of Disease Research Unit. Nthusang Lefafa spoke to some of the researchers to unpack the findings.
Taking the antibiotic doxycycline after condomless sex can reduce the risk of contracting three different sexually transmitted infections (STIs), according to a study presented last week at the AIDS 2022 conference in Montreal, Canada. Elri Voigt unpacks the study findings and asks local experts what it might mean for combatting STIs in South Africa.
The AIDS2022 conference held recently in Montreal, Canada highlighted yet again the need for community activism and the importance of involving young people, writes Dr Yogan Pillay. He argues that the youth and communities must be engaged in the conceptualisation and writing of South Africa’s new AIDS plan, and young people and community-based organisations must have a central role in key aspects of its implementation.
Special youth clinics appear to be an effective means of providing healthcare services to young people who otherwise might not engage with healthcare services. But is building more youth clinics realistic given our resource constraints, or is it better to focus on making ‘normal’ clinics more youth-friendly – or should we be looking beyond clinic-based healthcare services altogether? Tiyese Jeranji investigates.
There are a variety of tools available today to prevent pregnancy including pills, intrauterine devices, subdermal implants, injections, condoms, male and female sterilisation, and emergency contraception. Statistics suggest that people in South Africa do, in principle at least, have access to and are aware of these contraceptive methods, albeit not at the desired levels. Elna Schütz looks at what contraceptive methods are available and makes some surprising discoveries along the way about which ones are most popular.
In 2014, South Africa launched an HPV vaccination campaign targeting 9-year-old public school learners in Grade 4. It involves delivering two doses of vaccine six months apart. Laura Owings asks how the campaign is going and what recent real-world HPV vaccine effectiveness data from the United Kingdom might mean for South Africa.
Over the last few years reported cases of congenital syphilis in South Africa have increased. This, accompanied by little or lack of notification, makes its management a challenge. Tiyese Jeranji reports on what congenital syphilis is, its management as well as gaps in management.
South Africa will delay introducing a new HIV and TB plan until 2024, Deputy President David Mabuza revealed on Wednesday. The plan is delayed to allow the country’s HIV and TB responses to recover from COVID-19-related disruptions. Laura Lopez Gonzalez reports for Spotlight.
Despite the global emergence of highly resistant strains of gonorrhoea, including untreatable variants, a new antibiotic for the disease has not been developed in over half a century. In January, a trial began in South Africa and other countries for a new gonorrhoea antibiotic. But what is gonorrhoea? How significant is the problem in South Africa and among those living with HIV? Do we have resistant strains too? Experts report a grim situation, but with hope on the horizon. Amy Green reports.