Double up efforts to fight the double epidemic of TB-HIV

Alice Tembe, CNS Correspondent, Swaziland
It is no news that the TB bacteria and the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) together make up a co-epidemic that presents compounded complications in patients who host them, healthcare workers who have to manage the diseases, advocates and researchers fighting for answers as well as communities who have to cope with the disastrous effects of the co-epidemics.

Hope on the horizon for people living with MDR-TB

Catherine Mwauyakufa, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
More efficacious medications are needed in the successful treatment of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) if we are to realise the goal of ending  TB by 2030, as envisaged in the sustainable development goals (SDGs). World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 480,000 new MDR-TB cases were noted in 2014. Also treatment success rate stands at 50% globally. Something urgent needs to be done to save lives of people with MDR-TB.

[AIDS 2016] Self-stigma: Let us do more than just 'talk about it'

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
[CNS images] Senior HIV activists who have not only helped shape HIV responses on the ground over the years, but also have been living with the virus for several years, shared their personal battle against self-stigma at a press conference session hosted by The Work For Change and partners at the 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) held in Durban, South Africa.

How to prevent people living with HIV from dying of TB

Francis Okoye, CNS Correspondent, Nigeria
At a time in the history of the world (1980’s), for anyone to test positive for HIV was a death sentence. Today medical science has developed robust treatment regimens that allow people living with HIV (PLHIV) to live long, as far as they have access to anti retroviral therapy (ART). But of late, this has been jeopardised with the advancement of TB infections in PLHIV. TB and HIV are deeply intertwined, particularly in Sub saharan  Africa. TB has become the leading cause of death among those who are HIV-positive, despite the fact that today HIV infections can be managed with ART and TB can be cured in the vast majority of cases.

[AIDS 2016] We cannot end AIDS by 2030 if we put SRHR on blindspot

Integrated TB-HIV responses are a must to meet Sustainable Development Goals

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
At the 2015 United Nations General Assembly, governments  committed to achieve SDGs by 2030, one of which is to end AIDS and TB by 2030. If people living with HIV continue to die of TB, we will not only fail to achieve SDGs but also lose gains made in the fights against HIV and TB.

[AIDS 2016] Battling with three diseases and still going strong

Dr Samele Madela
Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
(Based on an exclusive interview with Nqobile Zungu, and her doctor Dr Samele Madela) I met 37 years old Nqobile Zungu, at the 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) that is being held in Durban. And yes, her looks were deceptive in the sense that one could never guess that her outwardly healthy body and cheerful attitude masked not one but three diseases. Now a mother of two kids, aged 12 and 8 years, Nqobile suffered from asthma from early childhood. In 2002, when she was 23 years old, she was diagnosed with diabetes.  She went to a clinic and reported her symptom of itching in her private parts, but did not think it important enough to tell that she was also urinating frequently. The medication she got did not improve her condition.

[AIDS 2016] We cannot eliminate TB if we leave children behind

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
"Children are central to where we are heading for in TB control. If we aim to end TB in the next 20 years we should know the trends in infection and disease in the paediatric population and amend it," said Dr Jennifer Furin of Harvard Medical School, at a session in International TB Conference (TB 2016) - a two-day conference dedicated exclusively to this infectious disease - that immediately preceded the 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) being currently held in port city of Durban. The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that nearly 1 million children get infected with TB and more than 30,000 children become sick every year with multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB).

South African and Indian groups honour Ashok Ramsarup for people-centric journalism

(L to R) Dr Ishwar Gilada, President AIDS Society of India;
awardee journalist Ashok Ramsarup; Mahatma Gandhi's grand
daughter Ela Gandhi and CNS head Shobha Shukla
[CNS Images] South African and Indian groups honoured longstanding journalist Ashok Ramsarup for his inspiring journalism covering health and development issues in South Africa, India and other nations in South Asia.

[AIDS 2016] Count the people at HIV risk right: Is money being spent or sitting in banks?

A recent UNAIDS report shows that decline in new HIV infections among adults has stalled. In 2014, key populations, including gay men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), sex workers and their clients, transgender people, people who inject drugs and prisoners, accounted for 35% of new HIV infections globally. It is estimated that MSM are 24 times more likely to become infected with HIV and transgender people are 49 times more likely to be living with HIV than adults in the general population.

[AIDS 2016] I am not good enough: Is that true?

"Some say (internal) stigma, some say (self) stigma – either way let’s do more than talk about it." If you are attending XXI International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) do not miss out on attending a session with a difference.

International AIDS Conferences: From Durban to Durban - has anything changed in 16 years?

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
Photo courtesy: The Hans India
AIDS2016, the XXI International AIDS Conference - (with the theme of 'Access Equity Rights Now') which will be held in Durban, South Africa, from 18 to 22 July 2016, marks a dramatic change in the country’s AIDS response in the 16 years since XIII International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2000), which was also held in Durban.