Thursday, February 23, 2012

too little, too late

Of 22.9 million HIV positive people in sub-Saharan Africa, 5.6 million are South African, according to a recent UNAIDS report. But only 1.6 million HIV positive people in South Africa are on antiretrovirals (ARVs), the report said. This amounted to only 37 percent of those who should be on treatment, said Catherine Sozi, coordinator of UNAIDS in South Africa. "We need to put another 1.6 million onto treatment by 2015,"she said.

Botswana, Namibia and Rwanda have more than 80 percent of their eligible HIV-positive populations on ARVs. In Ethiopia, Kenya, Swaziland and Zambia between 60 percent and 79 percent are on ARVs, according to the report.

The Swiss company Lonza is to manufacture anti-retroviral drugs in South Africa in joint venture with the South African government, named Ketlaphela ["I will live or survive" in Sesotho], will establish the first plant to manufacture active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) for anti-retroviral medicines in South Africa.

It may mean cheaper HIV drugs but i does not mean FREE anti-retrovirals. Commerce still takes priority in capitalism

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