There are an estimated half-million children living with HIV in sub-Saharan Africa. The predominant source of infection is presumed to be perinatal mother-to-child transmission, but general population data about paediatric HIV are sparse. The study characterises the epidemiology of HIV in children in sub-Saharan Africa by describing the prevalence, possible source of infection, and effects of paediatric HIV in a southern African population.
It is concluded that childhood HIV infection likely arises predominantly from mother-to-child transmission and is associated with poorer physical development. Overall antiretroviral therapy uptake was low, with the primary barrier to treatment appearing to be lack of diagnosis.
Pufall, E.; Nyamukapa, C.; Eaton, J.W.; Mutsindiri, R.; Chawira, G.; Munyati, S.; Robertson, L.; Gregson, S. HIV in Children in a General Population Sample in East Zimbabwe: Prevalence, Causes and Effects. PLoS ONE (2014) 9 (11) e113415. [DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113415]