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No. 947 Vol 22 ˇ Friday, December 8, 2006


People are coming in for treatment too late

December 1 was World AIDS day - a day set aside for the world to focus on the deadly disease. The North Coast Courier looked at some of the different organisations that are dealing with this scourge.

We asked the question: What has been done about AIDS on the North Coast? Who is involved? How many people are infected? This is what we found.

'Denial is the biggest problem'

The Brotherhood of Blessed Gérard in Mandeni has helped more than 1 800 inpatients admitted at their care centre and more than 1 300 home patients. Many of these are infected with the virus.

The centre is home to over 40 orphans all paid for through private fundraising and donations.

"We have not received any form of donations from the government. Most of our patients come from the Ilembe district, but we had patients from Cape Town or Johannesburg and even a few from other countries," said Father Gérard.

"The biggest problem is that most HIV infected people do not know about it because they did not go for an HIV test. Denial is the biggest problem."

The organisation has sufficient treatment but say they need more people to come forward.

"The government, infected people, different organisations and the public need to stand together united in the fight against the virus," said Father Gérard.

The North Coast Courier, No. 947 Vol 22 ˇ Friday, December 8, 2006, Pages 6-7

Corrections of the original had to be made for this online edition, which are marked by using Italics.

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