CDC in South Africa


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began working in South Africa in 1989 and established an office in 1995, assisting non-governmental and community-based organizations to address HIV. CDC partnered with South Africa to develop HIV clinical and research guidelines, and HIV and tuberculosis (TB) service delivery programs. CDC currently works with the South African National Department of Health on supporting HIV, TB, and influenza programs, as well as strengthening laboratory, surveillance, and workforce capacity.

Photo credit: Thom Pierce

South Africa map

What CDC is Doing in South Africa

CDC Impact in South Africa

An estimated 85% of people living with HIV knew their status, and 71% received antiretroviral therapy (ART) in 2017. Of those on treatment, 88% achieved viral load suppression.

CDC-supported implementing partners achieved 98% coverage of HIV testing and 96% treatment initiation for HIV-positive pregnant women in 2017. Mother-to-child transmission of HIV recently decreased to 1% at birth.

In districts supported by CDC-implementing partners, 96% of TB patients were tested for HIV in 2017 and 63% were HIV co-infected. Of those who were co-infected, 93% received ART in addition to TB treatment.

CDC supported almost 230,000 medical male circumcisions in 2017 – well over half of the male circumcisions performed during the same year.

94 fellows have graduated from the Field Epidemiology Training Program as of December 2018.

CDC Staff in South Africa
  • 21 U.S. Assignees
  • 76 Locally Employed
South Africa at a Glance
  • Population: 56,717,156 (2017)
  • Per capita income: $13,090
  • Life expectancy at birth: F 67 /M 61 years
  • Infant mortality rate: 36/1,000 live births

World Bank 2018, South Africa
Population Reference Bureau 2018, South Africa

South Africa Top 10 Causes of Death
  1. Tuberculosis
  2. Diabetes
  3. Other forms of heart disease
  4. Cerebrovascular diseases
  5. HIV
  6. Hypertensive diseases
  7. Influenza and pneumonia
  8. Other viral diseases
  9. Ischaemic heart diseases
  10. Chronic lower respiratory diseases

Statistics South Africa, Morality and causes of death in South Africa, 2016: Findings from death notification; Statistical Release P0309.3, February 2019

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Page last reviewed: October 9, 2020
Content source: Global Health