Commentary & Opinion
Donor Governments, Developing Countries Must Invest More in HIV Prevention
November 30, 2010
"Increasingly ... both donor and recipient governments are questioning the sustainability of foreign funding for antiretroviral treatment. ... It has become clear that treatment for HIV, though still crucially important, can't solve the problem. That will only happen through preventing transmission of the virus in the first place," Seth Berkley, CEO of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, writes in a Los Angeles Times opinion piece. Berkley highlights some of the current promising prevention options, including the use of the drug Truvada for pre-exposure prophylaxis and the HIV vaccine candidate tested in Thailand that showed the "first proof of efficacy -- albeit modest efficacy."
"Though the science for these new tools is promising, the funding base is flat, despite large investments of stimulus dollars by the United States government," Berkley notes, praising the U.S. "for financing the lion's share of both HIV treatment in Africa and HIV prevention research internationally." He continues: "Other donor countries that are contributing to HIV treatment globally should also make simultaneous and significant investments in new prevention methods to ensure that their HIV costs won't rise indefinitely. Governments of developing countries can also play their part, first by instituting proven HIV prevention efforts while being accountable for results as measured by reductions in new infections. Second, they can demand the development of new HIV prevention tools as passionately as they have demanded universal access to HIV treatment" (11/29).
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
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