SA HIV Scariest Stats – A recent research which studied the rate of HIV infections among SA teachers has been described as the scariest fact about the Human immunodeficiency virus in South Africa.
From our gatherings, the research was authorised by the Department of Basic Education. And, has been conducted for the second time to find out the rate of HIV status among SA teachers and school leaders.
As revealed by the latest survey, the number of educators currently living with HIV has increased. The HIV positive rate was higher than that of the first survey conducted in 2004.
However, it’s said that the increase is also a good thing. This is so because the increase recorded was partly caused by antiretroviral treatments.
Many teachers are receiving antiretroviral treatments and now living longer, the study explained.
SA HIV Scariest Stats, 8 Teachers Infected Daily
Precisely, the overall HIV prevalence among educators was at 15.3 percent. That amounts to about 58000 educators living with HIV in 2015.
“This was higher than in the 2004 survey which was 12.7 percent,” related the study. But, that’s not all. It was revealed that eight new infections were recorded daily.
Speaking, the lead investigator, Professor Khangelani Zuma from the Human Sciences Research Council specified that there were 2900 new infections among the educators in the year of the study (2015).
The figure for the year was tantamount to eight new infections every day, Zuma added. With that, the lead investigator lamented thus:
“They are the scariest figures and this should not be happening because educators are supposed to be more knowledgeable and you would expect them to know about HIV prevention.”
Other Details of HIV Among SA Teachers
KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape are the Provinces where HIV positive rates among educators were higher than that of the national average.
While the national average was at 0.84 percent, KZN and Eastern Cape respectively recorded 2.5 and 1.23 percent.
It was also discovered that HIV prevalence was significantly higher among SA female teachers (16.4%) compared to their male counterparts (12.7%).
But, there was a shift in the age group of teachers wherein the infection is most common. It’s now common in the 34-44 year age group compared to the 25-34 year age group in the 2004 survey.
Generally, it was identified that being HIV positive was common among single or widowed African teachers working in informal areas with low education levels and low disposable income.
It was recommended that HIV-prevention interventions be directed at younger teachers.
More attention should be tailored towards female teachers living in rural areas in KZN and Eastern Cape province.