Mugabes term comes to an end (12-07-07)

LOCAL and international academics as well as organisations helping Zimbabwean migrants are contemplating on formulating an HIV/AIDS prevention intervention strategy among the migrants whose arrivals in South Africa are swelling.

This would enable Zimbabwean migrants ac

cess to health services as well as antiretroviral drugs among other benefits. At the moment, they are struggling to get such services.

In a statement, architects of the programme said the strategy would be based on a HIV/AIDS survey that they are currently conducting in several Johannesburg areas where most Zimbabweans were based.

The conditions that Zimbabweans, fleeing the economic and political recession back home in their thousands daily, had made them vulnerable to the scourge, the evaluators said.

“Based on the preliminary findings of an ongoing survey in Hillbrow, Yeoville, Berea and CBD with four migrant nationalities (Zimbabwe being one), we have evidence that the conditions of the migration process and the difficult circumstances faced by migrants in Johannesburg are making them vulnerable and at risk to HIV. While the full results of the survey are not yet available, we anticipate the need for an HIV risk prevention intervention that will be useful to the community and tailored to their needs,” said the organisers in a statement.

Dr. Katherine Fritz, from the internationally renowned Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is assisting in the initiative. Having worked for many years in Zimbabwe, she said she was keen to assist the Zimbabwean diaspora in Johannesburg.

“The survey will help us formulate a culturally, socially and economically effective intervention that may have the potential to save lives from HIV,” said the involved organisations- CAJ News.

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