Zimbabwe Health Minister Urges Firms to Slash AIDS Drug Prices
October 30, 2007
The prices of HIV/AIDS drugs in Zimbabwe are too high and must come down, Health Minister Dr. David Parirenyatwa recently told the state-run Herald newspaper. The market price of one month's worth of generic antiretrovirals (ARVs) ranges from $10 million Zimbabwe (US $333) to $20 million (US $666), the paper said, while public sector clinics charge about $500,000 (US $17). The state-controlled Varichem facility is the nation's lone drug manufacturer, and the acute shortage of hard currency has reduced its ability to make ARVs; most must be imported. The health ministry wants to work with ARV producers to determine their actual manufacturing costs so the drugs' prices can be set at more affordable levels that also allow for a fair profit, Parirenyatwa said. Only about 90,000 Zimbabweans receive free ARVs from the government or charitable groups; the remaining 300,000 to 500,000 HIV/AIDS patients who need the drugs must pay for them.
Voice of America News
10.23.2007; Ndimyake Mwakayelye
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.