Does the 2011 budget address HIV and AIDS

Idasa’s Governance and AID Programme looks at the HIV and AIDS-Poverty causal relationship and asks: Does employment creation provide the answer? This paper attempts an answer by examining the 2011/12 budget

The national budget largely caters for HIV and AIDS interventions through direct and indirect budgetary interventions. The significant increase in the direct interventions will go a long way in mitigating the effects of the pandemic, knowing one’s status and universal access to treatment and preventing new infections. The indirect interventions will also be supportive and will create a conducive environment for an HIV and AIDS response. Read the full analysis here.


AIDS Leadership and Service Delivery in South Africa: What the People Thin

Will people vote for an HIV positive candidate? Read a new study by Godknow Giya of African democracy institute Idasa here. Its called “AIDS Leadership and Service Delivery in South Africa: What the People Think “and  it found more than eight out of ten people in provinces hardest hit by HIV and AIDS in South Africa will vote for a candidate who is HIV positive. According to an opinion survey conducted in municipalities in four provinces by African democracy institute Idasa, 86% of respondents in urban areas and just over 78% of South African in rural areas are likely to vote for an HIV positive representative. But lots more work has to be done in areas that aren’t so open.

Criminalisation of wilful transmission of HIV: sitting on the fence?

By Christele Diwouta, a researcher with Idasa’s Governance and AIDS Programme

In August this year the eyes of the world were upon an HIV-positive German pop star found guilty of having unprotected sex with her ex-partner and infecting him with HIV. Nadja Benaissa, 28, was found guilty and given a two-year suspended sentence as well as 300 hours of community service.

Nadja’s trial stirred up controversy and her story is not an isolated one. In the recent history of HIV and AIDS, there have been reported cases of wilful transmission of HIV. Some countries view the act of infecting a person with HIV as first-degree murder, as in the case of Ugandan-born Johnson Aziga under Canadian law.  Or it can be defined as serious bodily harm, as in the case or R. v. Cuerrier  where the supreme court of Canada ruled that a partner cannot truly give informed consent if the other fails to disclose their HIV status. In the American state of Florida, a person with a sexually transmitted disease other than HIV who knowingly passes on the disease through sexual activity is guilty of a misdemeanour.  But it is a felony  for any person who is knowingly infected with HIV to intentionally or recklessly pass it on to another person .

Continue reading

NHI: Call for strong and informed community participation

South Africa’s health indicators are nothing to be proud of, says Saranne Durham of Idasa’s Political Information & Monitoring Service in an article she co-wrote with Professors Sanders and Reynolds in the Cape Times 14 October 2010. South Africa’s under-five mortality rate of 67 deaths in 1000 live births is 10 times that of Cuba’s six, and six times Costa Rica’s 11. The proposed National Health Insurance “cannot bring about health for all unless the powerful vested interests are countered by political will, and sustained by community demand and mechanisms to ensure accountability of health care providers, managers and policy makers. A key ingredient of such a dispensation is strong and informed community participation in health and social policy development and implementation.” Read the article here.

Analysing budgets and tracking resources for HIV & AIDS in East Africa

The AIDS Budget Unit (ABU) of Idasa’s Governance and AIDS Programme (GAP), in partnership with The Eastern Africa National Networks of AIDS Service Organisations (EANNASO), held a capacity-building workshop on HIV & AIDS budget analysis and resource tracking from 13 to 17 September 2010 in Nairobi, Kenya. The training was attended by EANNASO staff and members from Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zanzibar. The main facilitators from Idasa were Vailet Mukotsanjera-Kowayi, Kisimba Mwenge and Godknows Giya, and the facilitators from EANNASO were Olive Mumba and Julius Sabuni.

ABU focuses on budget analysis and resource tracking of HIV and AIDS resources – tracking where the money comes from, who are the main service providers and who are the beneficiaries, as well as the effective, efficient utilisation and equitable distribution of resources. Conventional budget analysis tools are used, including the National AIDS Spending Assessment tool, which is UNAIDS’s brainchild.

See full report here.

Idasa warns of new needs of HIV-affected children

The latest study by Idasa’s Governance and AIDS Programme (GAP) warns that improved access to antiretroviral therapy has created a whole new dilemma for Africa. As the life expectancy of children living with HIV increases, where do AIDS orphans who have been cared for in institutions all their lives go for help after they turn 18? Caregivers and counsellors now have to deal with issues of dating, sex and health education at a different level and provide for post-matric life skills, including accommodation and tertiary education. Download the press release here.

For more information on this research and Idasa’s Governance and AIDS Programme, contact Marietjie Oelofsen, GAP Programme Manager, on 082 7730879 or 012 392 0575 or

Where Does Our Money Go?

Where does our money go? Idasa looks at priority and progress in South Africa’s health budgetWhere does our money go? Idasa looks at priority and progress in South Africa’s health budget and finds that, given South Africa’s poor health status, its continued failure to its commitment to dedicate 15% of the annual budget to health care is disappointing. If the concern is that the health departments lack the absorptive capacity for such additional funds, then faster and deeper health reform needs to be focused on. Institutional reform will ensure that not only departments can make the most of fund injections, but also that maximum value for money is attained from all funds allocated to health. Read the full report here and have your say.