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Hiv And Aids In Swaziland Essay

1038 words - 5 pages

The Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a virus that attacks the immune system and eventually leads to its failure which allows opportunistic infections and cancers to be contracted. Today are 34 million HIV positive people worldwide. Of that, over 75 percent live in Africa. The area most infected with the HIV virus is the Sub-Saharan Region, and because of that the average life expectance in that area is less than 50 years of age. Prior to the influence of HIV that number was almost to 70 years of age. ( I could ramble off statistics all day, but you can tell, HIV is a serious problem in africa. No one is quite sure how the virus started, but scientists have been able to narrow its origin down to a specific type of chimpanzee in West Africa. They believe that they the chimpanzee version of the immunodeficiency virus (SIV) was somehow transmitted to humans and then it mutated into HIV. It is not known how the virus was introduced to humans, but the most excepted theory is that hunters became exposed to the infected blood of chimps and then introduced to the HIV virus. ( AIDS, which stands for "Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome" is a way of describing a whole group of symptoms and diseases associated with the damage HIV does to the immune system. Here in America, being HIV positive is not necessarily a death sentence because we have drugs that can slow the virus and prevent it from becoming AIDS. In africa though, the needed medicine is vary expensive, and many infected persons might not even know they have the virus! Lack of education and a culture based on having children have made trying to rid Africa of AIDS quite a task, and we not really sure where to start.
As I mentioned, the area most affected by HIV is the Sub-Saharan region of Africa. One country in particular that has been greatly impacted by HIV and AIDS is Swaziland. Swaziland is a small, landlocked country by South Africa. It is no more then 200 squared miles but manages to have a very diverse climate and environment ranging from desert to mountainous. The area has been inhabited sense prehistory and used to belong to the United Kingdom until it became a protectorate after the Anglo-Boer War. About 75 percent of the country practices subsistence farming, and make less then 1.25 USD per day. Swaziland has a monarchy; the current ruler of swaziland is King Mswati II who took the throne in 1986 after the death of his father. Unlike some other countries, education had not been terrible previously in Swaziland. 90% of the population completed the 5th grade in 1990 and 80% complete 8th grade. The literacy rate is
almost 90% (
The population growth is just below 2 percent annually which is almost the same as the worldwide population growth. This is surprising due to the fact that the life expectancy has been cut in half from 62 in 2000 to 32 in 2009. This might...

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