HIV remains one of the leading causes of maternal and child mortality with only 68% of HIV-exposed infants receiving treatment in 2010 and 72,200 children newly infected with HIV in 2009. The aim of this campaign is to strengthen the Prevention of Mother-To-Child Transmission of HIV program in South Africa. This will be done through raising awareness about services available to mothers and promoting healthy behaviors, including optimal breastfeeding practices, and regular clinic visits.
HIV positive pregnant mothers can prevent their child from getting HIV by taking treatment during birth and breastfeeding, but this was at a low 38% in 2011. Exclusively breastfeeding a child for a minimum of 6 months significantly reduces the risk of a baby's death whether the mother is HIV positive or not, due to the immune boosting benefits of breast milk. Unfortunately among mothers of HIV-exposed infants only 20.4% were practicing exclusive breast feeding, with the rest using formula milk.
This campaign seeks to raise awareness about pregnancy services available to mothers and promote healthy behaviors, including breastfeeding and regular clinic visits as well as early and regular postnatal follow up. Various communication channels have been identified for this campaign to communicate messages to a wide variety of women which includes mothers and potential mothers across South Africa. Posters and information booklets will appeal to mothers in creative and informative ways.
The impact of an aware generation of mothers that HIV transmission from mother to child is preventable and that we are able to stamp it out altogether, has potential to greatly influence our future generations. No children need be born with HIV and this campaign has a crucial part to play educating mothers about their key role in realizing the vision of an AIDS free generation.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
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