The what, why and how of health and development

Pneumonia – a silent killer

Pneumonia has been labelled Africa’s ‘silent killer’ by the Global Health Council who say the problem does not receive as much attention as HIV, TB or malaria, despite causing more deaths.

In a blog post earlier this month, a writer from an affiliated community group with the GHC said that pneumonia is responsible for more deaths of children under the age of 15 than AIDS and malaria combined.

In areas such as South Africa where HIV is on the increase, the country has also seen a rise in the number of pneumonia cases in children. Fifty per cent of children who are hospitalised for pneumonia in South Africa are HIV infected, even though they make up less than 5% of the childhood population.

In response to the increase a new vaccine was rolled out in Africa in January, which could save half a million lives.

Read more here…

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