South Africa Mining Company Rolls Out Anti-AIDS Treatment
November 18, 2002
South Africa's largest gold miner, AngloGold, began distributing AIDS drugs on Thursday to its HIV-positive staff, who make up about a quarter of its regional workforce. AngloGold announced earlier this year that it would treat the HIV-positive employees among its 40,000 strong workforce. The pandemic costs it around $4-$6 per ounce mined, but the cost of failing to manage it would be $9 an ounce, the company said. Three employees received their first prescriptions for AIDS drugs on Wednesday. Over the next 5 months they and some 200 volunteers will be monitored, and treatment will be rolled out to all eligible patients who want it from April 2003. "We have about 2,500 to 3,000 people who are HIV-positive and eligible for antiretroviral therapy," said Anglo Gold Manager Petra Kruger. "For society's sake, we hope others follow us," AngloGold Chief Executive Officer Bobby Godsell said.
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.