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Botswana / global policy: Tlou chairs Global Task Force on Women and AIDS

15 Feb, 2009
Tags: policy

University of Botswana Lecturer and Former Minister of Health, Professor Sheila Dinotshe Tlou, has been asked by several international organisations to use her expertise and experience to assist with health problems at global level.

These have been mostly in the area of HIV and AIDS in which her long term accomplishments are widely recognised. She is the Chairperson of a Global Task Force on Women, Girls, Gender Equality and HIV/AIDS whose mandate is to develop an operational plan to strengthen strategic guidance and support and to assist countries to ensure that national HIV and development strategies, operational plans, monitoring and evaluation frameworks and associated budgets address the needs and rights of women and girls in the context of HIV and AIDS.

Prof Tlou led this task force because as Minister of Health of Botswana, she led HIV/AIDS interventions that resulted in a near-universal roll out of ARV’s which reached women, children and young people. Maternal mortality due to HIV/AIDS reduced from 38% in 2004 to about 9% in 2008, and Mother to child transmission of HIV reduced from 40% to less than 4% within 4 years, a result that has not been accomplished anywhere in Africa or the developing world. Members of the task force include current and former ministers of Health or Gender Affairs, ambassadors, United Nations regional representatives, and civil society leaders of organisations of women living with HIV/AIDS. She co-chairs the task force with the Executive Director of UNAIDS, Mr Michel Sidibe.

Prof Tlou is also Chairperson of the Global Health Council’s International Conference, which will take place in June 2010 in Washington DC, USA. The conference will assess global progress in the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). She co-chairs the conference with former Executive Director of UNAIDS, Dr Peter Piot. She recently chaired the Local Organising Committee of the 9th International AIDS Impact Conference which was held in Gaborone with participants from 38 countries.

21 Aug, 2009

Motlanthe: "Women are More Vulnerable to HIV"

The majority of women remain the victims of the HIV epidemic, says Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe. "We acknowledge as the government of South Africa that women are more vulnerable to HIV than their male counterparts. "We also acknowledge that year after year women form the majority of those infected by HIV - indeed almost 60 percent of all new infections now occur in women," Mr Motlanthe said at an HIV Prevention for Women and Girls Summit on Friday. For younger women, he said, the situation was even more tragic.

21 Aug, 2009

Address by deputy president of South Africa, Kgalema Motlanthe, during Sanac women's sector: HIV prevention for women and girls summit

I am pleased to address this event today, which seeks to find workable ways of preventing HIV. The struggle against this pandemic is intrinsically honourable to the extent that its purpose is to save human life. Chairperson, reducing the incidence of HIV and redressing the vulnerability of women to HIV is and should be at the forefront of our individual and collective efforts. It is a daunting challenge that has thwarted economic growth, overburdened our health care systems and brought personal tragedy to our people. I am very pleased to say that Government and its partners are taki

20 Aug, 2009

Research / Prevention: Vitamin D helps prevent HIV transmission from mother to child

A new study suggests that taking vitamin D supplements may help prevent the transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) from pregnant women to her child(s) and reduce child mortality. Dr John Cannell, a vitamin D expert and president of, cited the study as finding that: 1. at six weeks of age, infants from low maternal 25(OH)D HIV mothers had a 1.5 times increased risk of acquiring HIV through the birth canal. 2. at six weeks of age, infants from low maternal 25(OH)D HIV mothers had a 2.0 times increased risk of acquiring HIV through breast feeding. 3.

20 Aug, 2009

Prevention - PMTCT: Maternal HIV infection during pregnancy or breastfeeding poses substantial transmission risk for infants

There is a high risk of mother-to-child HIV transmission if a woman acquires HIV after delivery and then breastfeeds, a Chinese study published in the September 1st edition of the Journal of Infectious Diseases reports. A total of 104 women who contracted HIV through blood transfusions post-delivery were included in the study. All the women breastfed and 36% of their infants were infected with HIV.

19 Aug, 2009

Niger / Human Rights: Patching gaps in HIV law. When HIV left them few job options, HIV-positive women formed NGO to learn skill

Despite a two-year-old law in Niger penalizing discrimination against people infected with HIV, seropositive women say they still receive substandard health care, are denied employment and risk losing their children because of their status.  “When a woman is divorced as a result of her HIV status, it is difficult for her to keep her children,” said Sona Soumaré Conté, president of a local NGO that works with HIV-positive women.

19 Aug, 2009

Mexico / Prevention: Lanzan campaña para prevenir sida en mujeres embarazadas

La Secretaría de Salud del Distrito Federal inició ayer la campaña de detección oportuna del VIH-sida en mujeres embarazadas, debido al crecimiento en la tasa de transmisión perinatal.  De acuerdo con la dependencia capitalina, las acciones preventivas se aplicarán en los 210 centros de salud y las cinco clínicas especializadas de la red hospitalaria del Gobierno del DF.

18 Aug, 2009

Niger / Epidemiology: HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in Niger is 6.2% women

The wife of Niger state governor, Hajiya Jummai Babangida has lamented that HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in the state is 6.2 per cent, women and youth are the most vulnerable.  Hajiya Jummai said this with dismay during the occasion of the flag off of ceremony of a comprehensive treatment site at General Hospital Gawu Babangida in Gurara local government area of Niger state. She said, the Hospital is the twelfth (12th) Comprehensive HIV/AIDS treatment site in the state which will deliver the services of HIV Voluntary Counselling and Treatment,(VCT), Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission

17 Aug, 2009

Ethiopia / Prevention: Clinic shows way in preventing mother-to-child transmission -Fasika Lemma now helps other women reduce the risk of infecting their children

When the father of Fasika Lemma's daughter died seven years ago, she decided to get tested for HIV; the results revealed she was indeed HIV-positive, but worse was to come.  "A year after, I learned it could be transmitted to my daughter through breastfeeding," Fasika told IRIN/PlusNews. "I decided to have her tested."   Babies born to HIV-positive mothers and non-exclusively breastfed have a 25-40 percent chance of contracting the virus, according to the UN World Health Organization.  Fasika’s daughter was one of the unlucky ones.

13 Aug, 2009

Research / Basic Science: Una variante genética en el cromosoma X frena el avance del sida en algunas mujeres

MADRID.- Desde hace tiempo, los científicos saben que las mujeres son más vulnerables a la infección por el virus de la inmunodeficiencia humana (VIH), por motivos biológicos y sociales. Sin embargo, las diferencias de género en cuanto al progreso de la enfermedad no están claras. Unos investigadores alemanes han relacionado, por primera vez, una variante genética en el cromosoma X con un avance más lento del sida en las mujeres.

13 Aug, 2009

World / care and support: Salamander Trust launches HIV, Women and Motherhood, a multimedia project exploring the many and complex issues facing women living with HIV in relation to motherhood.

"HIV, Women and Motherhood" is a new Salamander Trust project, based on a Strategies for Hope venture into the world of audio documentation. This project, funded by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), explores the many and complex issues facing women living with HIV in relation to motherhood.