South Africa: AIDS Mortality Rises 57 Percent

A new report from South Africa shows a 57 percent increase in AIDS deaths over the last five years. But there is continuing debate over the real number of AIDS deaths in South Africa, where social stigma keeps people from listing AIDS on death certificates.

Also complicating efforts to tabulate the mortality toll is the government's lack of records for the cause of death of black people before 1994.

Experts say that while the figures released Friday are not a direct measure of AIDS deaths, young people and women made up most of the rise — and that mirrors the pattern of AIDS in South Africa, where HIV infects one out of every nine people.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.