The West and the World: South Africa's AIDS Crisis and Solution

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The West and The World
South Africa’s AIDS Crisis and Solution
When visiting South Africa, I was intrigued at the beauty of the country, but was also curious as to how the country was dealing with one of Africa’s largest problems, AIDS/HIV. With the AIDS epidemic having started over 25 years ago, the disease continues to affect the population of Africa, especially South Africa, the nation with 5.6 million people living with HIV, the most in the world. Much of South Africa’s history of struggle with the virus is attributed to misinformation given by Thabo Mbeki, a former president, who “questioned the link between HIV and AIDS” and his former health minister who misled the nation with ideas that the virus could be treated with “beets and garlic” (Lubock 11). This proved to be a major setback for treatment in South Africa, but in the past year it seems as though the nation is making huge strides towards a better treatment for HIV/AIDS for all citizens.

One huge movement towards the improvement of living with HIV in South Africa was announced on the eve of World AIDS day on Saturday, November 24th, 2012. This was the announcement, made by the health minister of South Africa, Dr. Aaron Motsoaledi, of a new “antiretroviral (ARV) tender that will include a triple fixed dose combination (FDC) tablet, which combines three pills into one” (Thom 1). In simple terms, this means that a patient does not have to take multiple treatment pills a day but only one. This is a major step towards the improvement of therapy and the cost of medication for the virus in South Africa. Instead of paying for three tablets a day, the patient will only have to pay for one, which is priced at a low R89.37, 10.91 US dollars, which is supposedly the “world’s lowest priced FDC” (Thom 1). Not only is this FDC tablet cheaper but also reduces storage of pills, and also more importantly has fewer side effects. This new triple combination pill also benefits HIV positive women who are pregnant....
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