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Medical News & Perspectives
July 12, 2000

AIDS in South Africa Takes Center Stage

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JAMA. 2000;284(2):165-167. doi:10.1001/jama.284.2.165

As the 13th International AIDS Conference convenes in Durban, South Africa, this week, attention is being focused as never before on the impact the disease is having on the meeting's host country.

"Africa is burning," chanted activists at the 12th International AIDS Conference in 1998, referring to the devastation wrought by the disease in sub-Saharan Africa—and it seems likely they will do so again during the meeting now under way. The HIV/AIDS conflagration clearly has not spared this nation of about 43 million people, where more than one tenth of the adult population is currently infected.