Aids Takes its Toll on Life Expectancy

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By Wezi Tjaronda

WINDHOEK

Namibia might take between 13 and 37 years to reverse life expectancy levels to what the country had in the 1990s.

Projections by the United Nations are that life expectancy in Namibia will reach the 1990 levels after 2045, while Namibia is more optimistic, putting its own projections at 2021.

This information is contained in a background paper in the Namibia Human Development Report, which was released in October last year. The paper is entitled Trends in Human Development and Human Poverty in Namibia.

The speed of recovery will depend on the effectiveness of programmes to treat people with Aids and to prevent new infections. The paper said increased mortality associated with Aids has made it the leading cause of death in Namibia, thus leading to the sharp fall in life expectancy.

Life expectancy is one of the values needed to calculate the human development indicators of a country. Others include literacy rates, gross enrolment and per capita income.

While the average income of Namibians improved from N$5ǟ

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