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HIV/AIDS programmes should focus on improved access.

Authors
  • Manning, A
Type
Published Article
Journal
BMJ (Clinical research ed.)
Publisher
British Medical Association
Publication Date
Oct 14, 2000
Volume
321
Issue
7266
Pages
963–963
Identifiers
PMID: 11202957
Source
Medline
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

This paper discusses the need for HIV/AIDS programs in sub-Saharan countries to focus more on improved access to information to empower poor people living in remote areas. It is noted that despite Glaxo Wellcome's move to reduce the cost of antiretroviral therapy, it is unlikely to have an impact on most of those infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS, since concerns regarding lack of sustainability, bureaucratic administration, and communication difficulties predominate in the country. In this regard, it is therefore recommended that national HIV/AIDS programs be balanced with the needs of both the community and the individual and in prevention and care. Health workers should be explicit in confronting traditional beliefs, such as those about gender roles and traditional medicine, in prevention campaigns. Moreover, there is also an urgent need to improve access to condoms; strengthen health programs such as directly observed treatment short-term (DOTS) courses for tuberculosis and the syndromic approach to sexually transmitted disease treatment; and improve practical support to communities caring for those who are sick and the orphans. Lastly, all partners working with prevention programs should use the more positive community attitudes towards HIV/AIDS issues seen in many sub-Saharan countries to develop evidence-based programs that focus more on improved access and less on sustainability.

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