What We're Reading: Week of August 30 - September 3
September 3, 2010
This week we paid special attention to news coming out of Malawi, as the Foundation joined with USAID, the Ministry of Health, and other partners to commemorate the conclusion of the Call to Action project
, which dramatically scaled up services to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) in the country.
Malawi’s Maravi Post
reported on the 200,000 pregnant women who have been tested for HIV through the project, and the 1,200 health workers the Foundation has trained to combat pediatric AIDS.
The Nyasa Times
also reported on Malawi’s adoption of new WHO guidelines to prioritize treatment for pregnant women, both to protect their own health and to dramatically reduce the risk of HIV transmission to their babies.
In South Africa, there was more news from Health-e
about the effect of the ongoing health sector strike on patients receiving antiretroviral drugs to treat HIV infection. IRIN’s PlusNews
wrote about cases of forced sterilization of HIV-positive women in South Africa and neighboring countries, indicating the need for more education and training for health care workers about human rights issues around PMTCT
. There was also an inspiring story from the Times of Zambia
about a KwaZulu-Natal doctor who has won the Rural Doctor of the Year Award in South Africa for reducing HIV transmission rates in infants at her hospital by almost 70%.
And just a month after World Breastfeeding Week
, there were two interesting articles about developments related to HIV and infant feeding. IPS News Service
wrote about the difficulties of counseling health professionals and HIV-positive pregnant women on the importance of exclusive breastfeeding, which is part of the WHO’s guidelines for the most effective method to maximize the chances for HIV-free infant survival. And finally, the LA Times
wrote about researchers’ findings that HIV-positive women who are breastfeeding should not be given vitamin A supplements, because it increases the risk of transmitting HIV to their infants.
Robert Yule is the Foundation's Media Manager, based in Washington, D.C.