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b) Effect on the agricultural sector

HIV/AIDS is a threat to food security. The agricultural sector in Sub-Sahara Africa engages 80 % of the labor force and contributes about 25% of the GDP.

Main issues
Reduction in productivity due to illness, thereby leading to food insecurity. The resultant malnutrition increases the risk and progression of the HIV/AIDS.

Malnutrition and HIV/AIDS reinforce each other to rob the families a decent living
Sale of farm assets for survival and care for the persons living with AIDS (PLWA)

Dying off with the acquired skills/experiences before they are passed on to the children
Loss of highly trained manpower that took years and a lot of resources to train.
The disease robs the families the manpower to create food security and generate income by reducing the effective labor force and forcing the rest to care for the sick. This is best illustrated by the case study below.

Case study: The setting is the slum areas in Nairobi city where people live on hand to mouth basis and on day-to-day basis. In many occasions, whether food gets into the mouth of the family depends on favors and reciprocation of the same. In such settings, HIV/AIDS spreads like bush fire; its thirst for a victim has no remedy. How do those living with HIV/AIDS fair? Read all in the attachment on Hunger Kills AIDS Patients in Poverty Stricken Nairobi Slums.

c) Effect on the health sector

The disease has affected all the sectors of the economy but the most severely affected is the health delivery service.

Owing to the HIV/AIDS opportunistic infections, there is increase in the number of people seeking health services. In 2000, the expenditure on HIV/AIDS in Kenya equaled the entire 93/94 budget of the Ministry of health.

Increase in cost of health care. The resultant effect is divesting the family assets. In Kenya, the cost of taking care of HIV/AIDS related conditions is estimated at Kshs 210 M (equivalent to $ 2.625m) per day.

Reduction on emphasis on other diseases as most of the expenditure goes to HIV/AIDS
Reduction in the budget for other public services.

Decline in the quality of service offered to persons infected with HIV/AIDS
It is estimated that 80% of hospital bed occupancy is by HIV/AIDS related cases

d) Effect on the industrial Sector

Not well documented except that estimates indicate about 25% reduction in output. The main effect comes as a result of;
Reduction in the size of the experienced labor force
Reduced labor productivity
Absenteeism
Expenses in recruitment and training
Medical expenses and staff benefits
Annual expenses for an average company in Kenya on HIV/AIDS related expenses is $ 140,000.00

e) Effect on national armed forces

The majority of the people in the armed forces do not live a family life. As a result, they are more inclined to have multiple partners. The emerging characteristics are that;

Infection levels in the Security forces are very high, in Kenya, it is between 20-40%, and the loss cannot be matched by training.
Lack of continuation in Ranks and Leadership
Increased recruitment and training costs
Reduced military and emergency preparedness
Threats to internal stability and external security.

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Other Articles of Interest:

What Would Jesus Do About Aids?
by Jonathan Frerichs, LWR Communication Director

Standing With Africa
by LWR President, Kathryn Wolford


Stand With Africa: A Campaign of Hope?
Written by Cathie DeGonia, Stand With Africa Campaign Communication Coordinator

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Writen by Asenath Omwego, LWR Regional Representative East Africa