South Africa is undergoing a transformation process after many years of one of the most brutal socio-political systems, the Apartheid; affecting every sector of the society including medical education and the delivery of healthcare services, (de Villiers, 1999). Apartheid was characterized by dividing the country according to the color of the skin, giving favoritism to the white man. Health care in South Africa was a dream until 1994 to the majority of the population which is black. With a more humanitarian social system in place, the country is trying to overcome the difficulties of present time, which is even harder after half a century of destruction, diseases and fraudulent administration. On the other hand, Aids and violence are the leading indicators regarding mortality rates of the South African population. There were over twenty one thousand murders in 2002 and almost eight million people are living with HIV/AIDS as of 2006, (Dixon, 2006).
Location and Geography.
South Africa is located at the southern most point of the African continent. It is surrounded by the waters of the South Atlantic Ocean at the west, and the Indian Ocean at the east coast. It is the 25th largest country in the planet and it also has the 24th largest population as well. It has different climatic zones that ranges from extremely deserts to tropic-similar weathers.
With about the size of the United Kingdom, France and Germany combined, South Africa holds an estimated population of thirty nine million people, where thirty two million are Africans, four millions are Whites, and another three million of mixed race. The literacy level is eighty two percent; however, only fifty four percent of the population is urbanized, (de Villiers, 1999). Furthermore, the life expectancy is approximately sixty six years and the eleven percent of the population is younger than five years old.
After being a colony of the British empire for two consecutive centuries, it was not until 1961 that South Africa became a republic. In 1991 Nelson Mandela one of the leaders in the fight for civil rights and against Apartheid, was liberated after twenty years of incarceration. Apartheid was not eradicated until 1994, thus turning the political system of the country into a more social-democrat oriented party that is still in place today, (Dixon, 2006).
With statistics that show the average gross domestic product (GDP) per capita income is US $5700, (Gavaza, 2009), the majority of the population which count for the eighty five percent, live in poverty and with no urbanization whatsoever, and people spend more that ten percent of its GDP on healthcare. On the contrary, the white population counts for a small six percent but hold the highest stake of the wealth in the country. In the post-Apartheid episode the Government has struggled to redistribute wealth and unemployment rate has increased gradually. Economic factors are...