The HIV & AIDS and STI National Strategic Plan 2007-2011:
Methods: This paper reviews key interventions described in the NSP regarding HIV prevention, management and treatment in respect of children younger than 14 years of age. A general overview of the plan and its implications for the health system was previously published.
Results: The NSP contains 4 priority areas, which were disaggregated into 19 goals. Each goal specifies several clearly worded objectives together with five-year targets, and identifies lead agencies responsible for the achievement of these targets. Nine of the nineteen goals (47%) goals address interventions, which mention or affect children directly. Paediatric specific objectives encompass HIV prevention and treatment, legislation, social security, education, mental health, and developmental monitoring. If implemented comprehensively, it will appreciably improve the country’s chances of achieving Millennium Development Goal 4, i.e. the reduction by two thirds the mortality rate among children under-5 years of age by 2015. However, substantial resources are required to achieve the goals and objectives of the NSP, including legal and policy amendments.
Conclusion: The plan is an important framework document, which should provide the necessary directionality for addressing the paediatric HIV epidemic in South Africa.
Desireé Christine Michaels, Paediatric Infectious Diseases Unit, Red Cross Children's Hospital, School of Child and Adolescent Health, University of Cape Town
Brian Stephen Eley, Paediatric Infectious Diseases Unit, Red Cross Children's Hospital, School of Child and Adolescent Health, University of Cape Town
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Date published: 2008-02-04
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