The African Viral Care Society has elected formidable leadership: Three highly qualified women with expertise in treating HIV are leading the AVCS in its mandate to advance the provision of optimal health care in South Africa and Africa.

The AVCS is a Non Profit Organisation founded by doctors for doctors. There is a need for a society that will bring focus to best clinical practice in the management of viral infections across South Africa and throughout Africa. Under the competent newly elected leadership the society envisages an Africa that is free of the health burden of HIV/AIDS and other Viral Infections.

PRESIDENT: Professor Nombulelo Magula

Prof Nombulelo Magula is Head of Internal Medicine at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. She has worked in the field of TB and HIV since qualifying as a Specialist Physician in 2002. She led the Adult HIV clinic at King Edward VIII Hospital from 2007 until 2017. Her research interests lie in the field of TB, HIV and Non-Communicable Diseases.

She completed her Masters Degree in Clinical Research at Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA, as a Fogarty Fellow.
Thereafter, she graduated with a PhD in Medicine at UKZN as a Discovery Foundation Fellow following her thesis titled: “Metabolic Complications of Antiretroviral Therapy in a South African Black Population”. She received an award at the 16th International Congress on Infectious Diseases and was invited to present her PhD work at the Emerging African Investigators
Symposium. Among her publications, she is an author and served as section editor for the HIV section of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine, 3rd Edition. The Textbook won the British Medical Association Book Award First Prize in Cardiology in 2019.

She serves as Key Opinion Leader for eThekwini Municipality for Fast-Track Cities for the International Association for Providers of AIDS Care (IAPAC) in collaboration with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). Prof Magula is a Commissioner for the Lancet HIV-IAPAC Commission on the Future of Urban HIV Responses (Lancet HIV-IAPAC Commission) which focuses on achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 3.3. She Chairs the Lancet HIV- IAPAC Commission sub-Committee on Social Determinants of Health.

She is a former member of the South African Ministerial Advisory Committee on Covid-19 and also served as a member of the University of Cape Town Steering Committee for the Institutional Reconciliation and Transformation Commission.

Vice President: Gail Ashford

Dr Gail Ashford is a Specialist Family Physician with a particular interest in prevention of mother to child transmission, care of pregnant women with HIV and their children. She has treated both Adults and children with HIV since 2003. She currently runs a private practice at Wits Donald Gordon Medical Centre with a multidisciplinary team, including inpatient and outpatient care.

She has provided expertise at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital Obstetric ARV Clinic since its opening in 2004 and provides high level care to women with complicated pregnancies and advanced HIV or virological failure.

She has developed a career in Family HIV care and has particular interests in Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMTCT), safe conception and nutrition and metabolic complications of HAART.

Vice-President: Dr Zinhle Makatini

Dr Zinhle Makatini is an accomplished Pathologist who holds a BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry and an MSc in Immunology from the University of London. This was followed by an MBChB from the University of Sheffield.

She returned to South Africa in 2000 to start Registrar training at the National Institute of Virology (now NICD). A gap in Registrar training in 2003, whilst with an international collaborative research project with the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the South African efense Force, provided her firm foundation and experience in HIV management and Clinical Trials. Dr Makatini re-joined the NHLS in 2006 to complete her training and sit her Fellowship Virology exams.