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From the editor.

A recently released report by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, titled Uniting for Universal Access: Towards Zero New HIV Infections, Zero Discrimination and Zero AIDS-related Deaths, highlights the facts that the global rate of new HIV infections is declining, treatment access is expanding, and the world has made significant strides in reducing transmission from mother to child.

The Secretary-General makes five suggestions to strengthen the AIDS response. We are encouraged to harness the energy of young people for an HIV prevention revolution, revitalise the push towards achieving universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support by 2015, work with countries to make HIV programmes more cost effective, efficient and sustainable, promote the health, human rights and dignity of women and girls, and ensure mutual accountability to translate commitments into action.

His goal setting is ambitious: to reduce the sexual transmission of HIV by 50%, and prevent all new HIV infections resulting from injecting drug use; to eliminate transmission from mother to child; to reduce tuberculosis deaths in people living with HIV by 50%; to ensure HIV treatment for 13 million people; to reduce by 50% the number of countries with HIV-related restrictions on entry, stay and residence; and to ensure equal access to education for children orphaned and made vulnerable by AIDS.

With these challenges in mind this journal continues to press forward with the goal of keeping you informed, very much with a philosophy of 'learning by sharing'.

In this edition, Campbell makes an eloquent case for an evidence-based approach to palliative care for children. Gounden compares outcomes in a private and a public sector cohort on antiretroviral therapy and finds some interesting prescribing differences between the two groups, although outcomes were very similar. The recent national testing campaign has included expansion into schools, and Pfaff and De Beer describe a youth-friendly testing campaign that has been implemented by an NGO in the Manguzi district. The surveillance and causes of infant mortality in South Africa was a passion of a very much missed colleague, David Bourne, who unexpectedly passed away in February 2009. The paper by

Boulle and colleagues is dedicated to David and acknowledges his work. Polyclonal gammopathy is a common finding in HIV, and Tathiah and colleagues present a retrospective study of serum electrophoresis patterns in patients in KZN.

Readers have expressed great interest in case reports. The benefit in learning from real clinical cases is acknowledged by the review committee, so this edition is full of interesting case reports. Continuing our important guidelines series, we present the management of hepatitis B infection as a co-infection with HIV. Thanks to the Southern African HIV Clinicians Society for this excellent collaboration. Coming soon are guidelines for safer conception, HIV-infected health care worker protection, and pre-exposure prophylaxis.

Exciting news is that in 2011 the editorial office is undergoing revitalisation and will have increased resources. This will be good news for those of you who have waited so patiently for reviews of your submissions. I sincerely apologise to frustrated authors who have found our current system tardy. This will be improved in 2011. Please continue to submit copy!

LINDA-GAIL BEKKER

Editor
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Author:Bekker, Linda-Gail
Publication:Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine
Article Type:Editorial
Date:Apr 1, 2011
Words:522
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