Australian Prime Minister to Review Acceptance of HIV-Positive Immigrants
June 1, 2007
Today in Sydney, Prime Minister John Howard reiterated his belief that Australia should not allow the immigration of persons who are HIV-positive or have communicable diseases like TB. "My view is the best result is that no one with those sort of ailments is allowed into the country," Howard said in a radio interview. A review of the policies is underway and should be completed soon, Howard said. Australia already bars most applicants with HIV/AIDS or other serious conditions on the grounds they would overburden the health care system, but some exceptions are allowed. Howard's latest comments came after a government audit found that of those granted exemptions on the condition that they report to doctors, some 20,000 did not follow through. Howard's remarks on the topic last month angered some health care workers, who said he was demonizing foreigners and blaming patients for being ill.