1650AIDS in Africa
- Sep 5, 2000"African Leaders to Meet Annan, Discuss Flash Points"
Reuters (www.reuters.com) (09/05/00); Mseteka, Buchizya
The presidents of South Africa, Malawi, Namibia, and Zimbabwe
will meet with United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today
to discuss war, debt relief, and AIDS in their countries.
According to analysts, Africa's huge debt load has forced many
countries to spend more on debt problems than on health issues
like AIDS. U.N. statistics indicate that Africa needs at least
$3 billion annually to battle AIDS.
"AIDS Activists Take South African Government to Court"
Lancet (www.thelancet.com) (08/26/00) Vol. 356, No. 9231, P. 746;
South African AIDS activists plan to take their government to
court because it refuses to provide HIV-positive pregnant women
with drugs to help prevent vertical transmission of HIV. The
Treatment Action Campaign set an August 18 deadline for the
health department to change its policies on treating pregnant
women. After no response, legal action is expected. Health
Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang recently announced that clinics
will be chosen for research into nevirapine's use in protecting
newborns from HIV. Antiretroviral drugs are only available in
South Africa on a trial basis at selected sites. After the big
AIDS conference in July, activists had hoped that a shift in
policy would take place. The health department has offered
several reasons for not providing the drugs, including toxicity
and their high price.
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