The implication of HIV/ AIDS on African Society
Studies on human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) prevalence have indicated that HIV/AIDS continues to ravage the African countries. According to a report by the UNAIDS, it is estimated that 69% of all the people living with HIV finds their home in Africa (78). This is a relatively high prevalence considering that Africa accounts for only 14.5% of the world population. Although some theories on the origin of HIV has linked the earliest known case to West Africa, recent studies have indicated that South Africa is the worst affected region in the world with infection rates ranging between 20 to 30 percent of the sexually active population. AIDS-related mortality has resulted to low life expectancy and decreased population growth rate in most Sub-Saharan countries in Africa. This research paper analyses the consequences of HIV/AIDS epidemic on the social life, economy and education sector of the African society.
Stigma and discrimination tops the list of the heaviest burdens that those living with HIV/AIDS have to shoulder. It is not uncommon, especially in African countries to have people living with HIV/AIDS being denied equal access to health. Many people believe that a HIV positive person is destined to die and hence needs no medical attention. In some communities, moreover, HIV/AIDS patients were regarded as outcast and were left to die in the forests. This perception is, however, changing owing to the great campaign sensitizing against discrimination. People living with HIV/AIDS are in most cases denied equal employment opportunity. Most employers argue that HIV infected persons are more likely to neglect their duties as they need more time to seek specialized health care. Innocent children infected with HIV may not know how to deal with stigma. Their peers avoid interacting or even playing with them; this renders them...