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22 May 2017 21:07 (South Africa)

WHO changes tack over Aids drugs

The World Health Organisation says HIV drugs should now be given sooner to those with the virus and should also be given to affected breastfeeding mothers to cut infection rates and save lives. This is based on the most up-to-date information available. But it also means many more people will be needing treatment among an estimated 33 million people living with HIV/Aids worldwide, and will cost much more. WHO also wants adults and adolescents to receive anti-retroviral therapy before their immune system’s strength falls below a certain level, regardless of whether they show symptoms or not. And it wants to phase out a low-cost and widely available drug in favour of others which do not have irreversible side effects. Sub-Saharan Africa accounts for 67% of new HIV infections, including 91% of childhood infections. Read more: BBC, The Globe and Mail

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