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The number of pregnancies in HIV infected women is increasing. In 1998 there were just 185 confirmed cases, which increased to 758 in 2002.1 This probably reflects an increase in incidence as well as an increase in “identification” by the introduction of routine antenatal screening. The success of routine antenatal screening is, however, variable, with the target of 90% of pregnancies being screened being achieved in very few areas. This highlights the need for far more training of both midwives and obstetricians, discussing openly the benefit and need for antenatal testing.
About three quarters of all women, globally, who are infected with HIV come from sub-Saharan Africa.