South Africa to give free HIV treatment to all infected people


South Africans that are HIV positive will receive free antiretroviral treatment from the state in a bid to fight the virus in the country.

South Africa is the world’s leading country in the number of people infected by HIV.

Before this announcement, South Africans that tested positive for the virus were eligible for free treatment based on certain measures of their white blood cells, which fight infection.

“This new policy extends this to all people living with HIV,” a statement from the country’s health department said.

South Africa has one of the world’s largest treatment programs, with over 3.4 million people receiving HIV medication.

The United Nations has said some seven million people in South Africa were believed to be infected with HIV in 2015.

The health department said the change in policy would help increase life expectancy in the country, currently at 63 years, to at least 70 years by 2030.