Free HIV Treatment for All Infected in South Africa

Free HIV Treatment for All Infected in South Africa

South Africa said Thursday it will now provide free treatment to all people infected with HIV, regardless of the condition of their immune system. The country leads the world in infections. Before the announcement by the country’s health department, people were eligible for free treatment based on a certain measure of their white blood cells, which fight infection. “This new policy extends to all people living with HIV,” the department said, reported AP. The change is based on World Health Organization guidelines adopted in late 2015 after it was found that treating those with HIV as early as possible improves health and prolongs their life. South Africa has one of the world’s largest treatment programs, with over 3.4 million people receiving HIV medication. The change in policy would help increase life expectancy, currently at 63 years, to at least 70 years by 2030.

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