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Saturday

WEEK 8

We went jogging this morning and randomly ran passed our Taiwanese friends! They were taking pictures of the ICAP building (International Counsel on AIDS Prevention) and then, when they saw us, they turned their cameras on us!! We were sweaty and dirty… gross, we definitely didn’t want our pictures. They text messaged us that they were the paparazzi… now I know how Jessica Simpson feels.

We had a lecture at Baylor today on Malnutrition and Infant mortality in Swaziland:

The Millenium Development Goal #4 is to reduce, by 2/3, mortality of children under the age of 5 years by the year 2015. In Swaziland, their infant mortality rates have actually gone up!! The Clinton Foundation did a study on infant malnutrition in Swaziland and the affiliated mortality rate. The infant mortality rate in Swaziland has increased from 110 babies per 1,000 live births to 164 babies per 1,000 live births. They predict that the rate has gone up due to the increase in HIV prevalence and they do not expect to meet the Millenium Development Goal as a country.

Malnutrition is also a problem because in most countries, malnutrition can be cured as an outpatient procedure with mechanisms like Plumpy’nut (watch the Anderson Cooper 60 minutes video I told you about before… please!!), but in Swaziland, the babies are brought to clinics in such an advanced state of malnutrition that they have to be treated as an inpatient procedure and 37% of these children die in the hospital. Before the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the malnutrition mortality was only 5%!! Over half of these patients are less than 12 months old. Being HIV exposed (the mothers have HIV and the babies may or may not have HIV) is the highest predictor of malnutrition and infant mortality. Baylor is working on a Standard Operating Procedure for identifying these babies susceptible to malnutrition and getting them into care. Anne and I are getting the chance to help! Very exciting…

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