Although South Africa is considered to have the highest number of people living with HIV, we can certainly accredit the health ministry in the country for being in the forefront when it comes to fighting HIV and attempting to keep the number of infected people from rising. Ensuring that this becomes a reality, the Medicines Control Council (MCC), in partnership with the department of health, has approved a new drug that prevents people from contracting the virus.
The two-in-one pill acts as a form of pre-exposure prophylaxis medication and if taken daily, effectively reduces the chances of getting HIV. The MCC and the health department, with the help of medical experts and other relevant parties, have been working hard over the past months to ensure that the pill is effective and safe for people to use.
Deputy director of the Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation, Prof Linda Gail Bekker, has expressed her excitement about the licensing of the drug saying it is affordable and a more effective way of preventing HIV.
“Adding Truvada to the arsenal of tools available to battle HIV is a major step forward for South Africa. We are at a critical time and must be really serious about reducing new infections in all populations‚ especially those who are young and particularly vulnerable to infection,” said Bekker.
“Our next step is to support the Department of Health to quickly figure out the best way to make Truvada available to those most at-risk for HIV infection. Turning off the tap to new infections is a maximum investment for the future of South Africa,” she added.
It’s comforting to know that HIV/Aids in South Africa remains a primary health concern. We hope that measures will be put in place to ensure that ordinary South Africans are educated about Truvada and we give credit to the MCC and health department for bringing this ground-breaking tool to the country! Together, we can beat the spread of HIV in our nation!