PMTCT making small gains in North West Province
The North West’s rate of immunisation of babies is the lowest in the country, and its TB cure rate has worsened slightly.
The immunisation rate of babies dropped by 5% to a countrywide low of 71%. The biggest decrease was in the Bojanala district, where there was a drop in immunisation coverage of 10% to 61.7%.
The TB cure rate dropped from 60% to 58%.
‘This is an indictment on management that the priority TB programme showed no improvement and this requires greater attention,’ notes the Barometer.
However, the province seems to be slowly improving its people’s health status on other indicators.
Its per capita expenditure on primary health care is R308 ‘ the second highest in the country. This is relatively equally spread between the four districts.
Almost three-quarters of pregnant women are now tested for HIV. In Bophirima district, the HIV testing rate more than doubled, indicating that the provincial authorities are paying attention to implementing the prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission programme.
The incidence of sexually transmitted infections has dropped steadily although the condom distribution rate has remained constant.