HIV In Africa

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Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is caused by a virus called Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). HIV is a virus that affects the immune system and destroys the cells which help protect the body from illness. Unlike other viruses that the immune system can normally fight off, HIV cannot be eliminated by the immune system. HIV is found throughout all the tissues of the body but is transmitted via the body fluids such as semen, vaginal fluids, blood, and breast milk, of an infected person. The most common symptoms of HIV include body rashes, fever, sore throat, and severe headaches. Symptoms typically last for 1 to 2 weeks. If you have several of these symptoms and suspect you may have been infected, schedule an appointment with…show more content…
HIV/AIDS in Africa has led to 17 million deaths. Africa remains the largest affected continent with more than 70% of all HIV/AIDS related cases. This disease has the highest socioeconomic impact, for instance demographic impacts - AIDS causes premature deaths. The majority of infected people acquires HIV in their twenties or thirties and will die of AIDS on average a decade later which has resulted in increased mortality among children under five, and is now wiping out half a century of development gains, including increases in life expectancy at birth. Recent studies among various African populations indicate that rates of HIV infection in young women aged 15 to 19 may be five to six times higher than in young men. Social impacts – families bear the brunt of the misery caused by AIDS because those who fall ill become unable to work, forcing family members to care for them rather than producing food or income. Families are also subject to discrimination if they have members who are HIV-positive, often facing reduced access to publicly available social and economic…show more content…
As teachers become ill and unable to work, some schools are closing. Health services - since the beginning of the epidemic, 21.8 million people have fallen sick and died of AIDS, placing ever-increasing demands on health services in the worst-affected countries. HIV-positive people lack access to medicines and to health care, often facing discrimination from hospital staff or health-care systems. Orphans - AIDS has a dramatic impact on children, particularly through the emergence of an entire generation of orphans to families affected by HIV. To date, the epidemic has left behind 13.2 million orphans, children who before the age of 15 have lost either their mother or both parents to AIDS. Economic impacts - growing evidence suggests that AIDS is having a devastating effect on economic growth and incomes. An African country overall GDP growth would be 2.6% lower each year. At the end of 20 years, the economy would be two thirds smaller than it would otherwise have been. Workers - AIDS reduces the number of healthy workers, especially experienced workers in their most productive years. This raises dependency, diminishes human capital, and may cut productivity growth by as much as 50%. In the public sector, AIDS reduces government revenues and puts severe strain on budgets as spending on health and social welfare mount. In the private sector, firms face higher costs in training, insurance, benefits, absenteeism, medical costs, sick leave, funerals

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