Brazil to Help Mozambique Produce Generic AIDS Drugs
August 4, 2005
Last month, Brazil and Mozambique signed an agreement to study the feasibility of a plant to produce generic antiretrovirals (ARVs) in Mozambique. Currently, authorities are looking for a firm to undertake the study and to help the Mozambican government obtain funding. Martinho Dgedge, a spokesperson for the Mozambican Health Ministry, said the plant will likely be built only if it could sell the drugs both within Mozambique and outside the country.
"An ARV plant would contribute significantly to the reduction of HIV and AIDS-related deaths," said Arlindo Fernandes, chairperson of Associa o Kindlimuka. About 75 percent of the group's 500 members are on ARVs.
In 2004, Mozambique spent more than $4 million on ARVs to treat roughly 7,000 people. Dgedge said close to 20,000 people will receive ARVs in 2005, since $7 million has been allocated for treatment this year.
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton's foundation has negotiated with generic ARV manufacturers to ensure Mozambique obtains drugs as cheaply as possible.
Ireland, also, has given the country funds for ARVs. An Italian nongovernmental organization, the Community of Sant Egidio, provides assistance to 9,200 HIV-positive Mozambicans, 4,200 of whom are on ARVs. The group's DREAM (Drug Resource Enhancement Against AIDS and Malnutrition) program gives out free ARVs, food supplements, and water filters. The program has been very successful in preventing mother-to-child transmission.
Mozambique has 500 new HIV/AIDS cases a day. Official statistics show about 1.2 million people in the country have HIV/AIDS.
Inter Press Service
08.01.2005; Bayano Valy
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.