Anglo American: fighting the joint epidemics of HIV and TB in South Africa
As part of our look at World AIDS day 2017, Stefaan Van der Borght, Global Head of Health, Anglo American discusses how the mining company fights the joint epidemics of HIV and TB in South Africa - Part 2
The work isn’t over yet – looking to 2030
The progress in fighting these epidemics has not been achieved by one government or one organisation alone. It is by working together, across industries, governments, businesses and civil society, that a real difference is made. But it cannot stop here – there are still 37 million people worldwide infected with HIV. In December 2016, we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) as part of our reinvigorated role in the global fight against AIDS. Ending AIDS by 2030 is a Sustainable Development Goal and if this is going to be achieved, collaboration and action must continue and TB must be fought alongside HIV, to maximise the chance of ridding affected communities and people of these diseases.
Case study: INH programme in Rustenburg
During 2016, Anglo American’s Platinum division expanded its single-dose isoniazid (INH), an antibiotic used to treat TB, prevention therapy programme.
Following a full review of its TB and HIV management programmes, the Platinum unit has achieved a significant improvement in performance across incidence rates, disease management programme enrolment and treatment uptake. The review examined the people, processes and technologies used, and the resulting plan included: increasing staff numbers and training opportunities; managing seamless referrals and the introduction of red flags to trigger follow up of defaulters and those not enrolled on the disease management programme; the use of the Tuberculin test, designed to indicate if people have ever been exposed to TB, and the availability of INH prophylactic therapy.
Between January 2015 and November 2016, the cumulative number of ‘high risk’ employees started on INH prophylaxis was 5,522. The follow-up of individuals with known HIV-positive status who had not joined the programme saw just over 96% of people enrolling. Between 2013 and October 2016, the registration on HIV disease management increased by 18% and enrolment on ART increased significantly by 52%. Of the individuals on the TB disease management programme, the proportion of ART uptake increased. This demonstrates how the uptake for treatment for TB has indirectly led to more people receiving ART, combatting the two illnesses at the same time and having more impact.
This treatment programme has resulted in a decrease in TB incidence over the past three years – with a reduction in both pulmonary TB and extra-pulmonary TB. Against the backdrop of the ‘test and treat’ treatment guideline and the 90-90-90 target set by UNAIDS, Anglo American’s Platinum business is continuing to work towards meeting these new targets. In addition, it is strengthening its partnerships with district health facilities and other social partners to ensure that any gaps in the prevention, treatment and care space are identified and managed.
Vale invests $150mn to extend life of Manitoba operations
Vale has announced a $150mn CAD investment to extend current mining activities in Thompson, Manitoba by 10 years while aggressive exploration drilling of known orebodies holds the promise of mining well past 2040.
Global energy transition is boosting the market for nickel
The Thompson Mine Expansion is a two-phase project. The announcement represents Phase 1 and includes critical infrastructure such as new ventilation raises and fans, increased backfill capacity and additional power distribution. The changes are forecast to improve current production by 30%.
“This is the largest single investment we have made in our Thompson operations in the past two decades,” said Mark Travers, Executive Vice-President for Base Metals with Vale. “It is significant news for our employees, for the Thompson community and for the Province of Manitoba.
“The global movement to electric vehicles, renewable energies and carbon reduction has shone a welcome spotlight on nickel – positioning the metal we mine as a key contributor to a greener future and boosting world demand. We are proud that Thompson can be part of that future and part of the low carbon solution.”
Vale continues drilling program at Manitoba
Coupled with today’s announcement, Vale is continuing an extensive drilling program to further define known orebodies and search for new mineralization.
“This $150mn investment is just one part of our ambitious Thompson turnaround story. It is an indicator of our confidence in a long future for the Thompson operations,” added Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Base Metals operations.
“Active collaboration between our design team, technical services, USW Local 6166, and our entire Thompson workforce has delivered a safe, efficient and fit-for-purpose plan that will enable us to extract the Thompson nickel resources for many years to come.”
The Thompson orebody was first discovered in 1956 by Vale (then known as Inco) following the adoption of new exploration technology and the largest exploration program to-date in the company’s history. Mining of the Thompson orebody began in 1961.
“We see the lighting of a path forward to a sustainable and prosperous future for Vale Base Metals in Manitoba,” said Gary Annett, General Manager of Vale’s Manitoba Operations.