Knowing HIV status applies to women too

After seeing the government and the student unions' statistics on HIV, Aids and sexually transmitted diseases in the strategic draft plan for 2007-11, it becomes clear that we are facing an enormous challenge in dealing with the pandemic.

After seeing the government and the student unions' statistics on HIV, Aids and sexually transmitted diseases in the strategic draft plan for 2007-11, it becomes clear that we are facing an enormous challenge in dealing with the pandemic.

Kgosi Letlapa, the South African Medical Council chairman, quite correctly said: "What we need to do is rehabilitate men by changing their mindset about multiple partners."

This is true, but women must also be rehabilitated because not only men have multiple partners. I know women who boast about getting pap geld from more than one man. So what does that say about our women?

Not all men refuse to be tested for HIV. I am saying this because recently, K-Wave Services & Consultancy were doing voluntary counselling and testing at schools for the Gauteng Education Department. From what I observed, many more male teachers volunteered to be tested than females. At our school, more than 90percent of male and less than 10percent of female teachers had themselves tested.

This shows that things are starting to take a different turn and it seems to me that men are reacting positively to the slogan, Know Your Status.

So if the medical council is serious about fighting HIV-Aids, it must widen its net and focus on everyone, not only men.

Kedibone Sekhwela, Tembisa

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