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The first suspected cases of paediatric AIDS were recorded in 1981 in the United States, but were only reported in the medical literature in December 1982 (Ammann, 1997; CDC, 1982a, b; Shilts, 1987). The existence of paediatric AIDS, along with the possibility of transmission vertically and through blood products, was not widely accepted until the end of 1983 (Ammann, 1997). In South Africa, there is little information on children infected with HIV prior to 1997's emergence of Nkosi Johnson's story. However, the already high level of HIV prevalence among pregnant women when data first became available in 1990 suggests that significant numbers of children must have been born with HIV since the early 1980s. © 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Original publication





Book title

HIV/AIDS in South Africa 25 Years On: Psychosocial Perspectives

Publication Date



69 - 87