Latest study on aging in South Africa presents some of the first incidence rates of aging-related cognitive impairment in this population

An older South African man and a healthcare worker do an intake sitting outside in rural South Africa

HAALSI researchers — including former Harvard Bell Fellow Lindsay Kobayashi, and Harvard Pop Center Research Associate Meagan Farrell, and Director Lisa Berkman — have published a study that finds similar patterning between social disparities (such as differences in formal education, literacy and marital status) and cognitive impairment rates in rural South Africa as observed in many high-income countries.

Does alcohol consumption play a role in the spread of HIV among older adults in South Africa?

Multiple glasses of red wine

A study by HAALSI researchers finds that increased and more frequent alcohol consumption among older adults in South Africa is linked with higher levels of sexual risk taking, patterns of behavior that could contribute to the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.

Does cognitive function in older population living in South Africa differ based on HIV status?

Older men and women in South Africa part of the HAALSI study

A team of researchers affiliated with the HAALSI study have published their findings in Nature indicating that cognitive function scores varied depending on whether participants were being assessed using conventional measurement instruments versus one designed for low-literacy settings.

Is social capital valuable in protecting cognitive function in lower-resource settings such as rural South Africa?

Older man in South Africa sitting in a field

While theories about the connection between strong social supports and better cognitive health among an aging population are well established in higher resource settings (high income, high education levels), less is known about whether this same pattern exists in lower resource settings. Researchers affiliated with Health and Aging in Africa: a Longitudinal Study of an INDEPTH community in South Africa (HAALSI) have published findings that suggest that a similar pattern…

How can diabetes be more accurately diagnosed in an aging South African population?

South African women

Two of the most common tests for diagnosing diabetes (fasting plasma glucose and HbA1c) don’t always yield the same result, and researchers affiliated with the research study Health and Aging in Africa: A Longitudinal Study of an INDEPTH Community in South Africa (HAALSI) took a closer look at the concordance of these test results within an aging population in South Africa. Their findings were published in the Journal of the…

Impact of traumatic events earlier in life still registers among older cohort in rural South Africa

Older man in South Africa sitting in a field

Researchers affiliated with a longitudinal study on aging in South Africa (HAALSI) have published a paper that examines the impact of traumatic events experienced earlier in the life course on cognition, and mental and physical health outcomes in an older South African population.

A first look at the emergence of chronic multimorbidity, including HIV, among aging population in South Africa

Older man in South Africa sitting in a field

Partly due to the advancement of antiretroviral therapy (ART), South Africa is now among those countries whose population is living longer. Along with this blessing often goes the complex burden of managing multimorbidities such as cardiometabolic conditions, mental disorders, HIV and/or anaemia. A study by researchers affiliated with Health and Aging in Africa: A Longitudinal Study of an INDEPTH Community in South Africa (HAALSI) is one of the first to…

HIV treatment programs linked to better cardiometabolic health indicators in South African patients

Researchers in the The Health and Aging in Africa: a longitudinal study of an INDEPTH Community in South Africa (HAALSI) project explored whether those people living with HIV receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART) might have better chronic disease (e.g. hypertension, diabetes) control and numbers resulting from the “cascade” of care. The results are published in JIAS.

Immediate eligibility of ART lowers household-level incidence of HIV by over 40%

A study finds that early eligibility of antiretroviral therapy substantially lowered HIV incidence among HIV-uninfected household members in rural South Africa. The team of researchers who published the findings includes Harvard Pop Center faculty members Drs. Kenneth Mayer and Till Bärnighausen, as well as Visiting Scientist Guy Harling.