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Washington, D.C., Africa Action, .  p.Debt is the greatest economic obstacle to African efforts to combat the HIV/AIDS crisis. Debt repayments rob $15 billion from the continent every year. This money could be used to provide health care to millions of people and to fund the war on HIV/AIDS. But it is instead being taken away by foreign governments and institutions. Africa's debts must be canceled to allow Africa's people to control their own resources and direct them towards their real priorities--combating poverty and the HIV/AIDS crisis. (excerpt)
AIDS TREATMENT NEWS. 1995 Jun 16; (225):7-8.Despite World Bank protest, an editorial review was published in the British Journal "AIDS" critical of World Bank- and International Monetary Fund-imposed structural adjustment programs. The authors, researchers at the University of California's Center for AIDS Prevention Studies, argue that structural adjustment programs imposed upon developing countries since the early 1980s may have created conditions which favor the spread of HIV infection in developing countries. In the attempt to control inflation and redirect production toward exports, these programs also greatly increased individual and national hardship, including the reduction of public services. The article is particularly concerned about the following alleged consequences of structural adjustment: the decline of the rural subsistence economy, forcing rural-urban migration in search of employment; the development of a transportation infrastructure, through which HIV spreads; migration and urbanization; and reduced spending upon health and social services. The authors recommend specific changes in development programs. Far from the condemnation received by the World Bank, both the authors of the article and the management of "AIDS" deserve considerable credit for bringing this problem to light. Almost all AIDS prevention activity has focused upon getting individuals to change their behavior. The "AIDS" review has instead provoked thought about the potential need for institutional change as well in preventing HIV infection and AIDS. Reform is, however, unlikely since institutions are loathe to acknowledge having any responsibility for the health consequences of their actions.
AIDS WEEKLY. 1995 Jul 10; 8-10.International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank structural adjustment programs (SAPs) imposed on developing nations in the 1980s inadvertently helped set the stage for the AIDS epidemic. These programs continue to hinder efforts to prevent HIV transmission. SAPs resulted in the following phenomena which place populations at risk of HIV infection: increased rural-urban migration of cheap labor sparked by a shift to an export-oriented economy, the development of transportation infrastructures in the 1980s to support the changed economy, increased migration and urbanization, and reduced government spending upon health and social services necessitated by the SAPs. For HIV transmission in developing countries to be substantially reduced, the SAP economic policies which may have promoted disease must be modified. An alternative development strategy must satisfy basic human needs such as food, housing, and transport; shift emphasis from the production of a small number of primary commodities for export to diversified agricultural production; support marginal producers and subsistence farmers; emphasize human resource development; end the top-down approach favored by the IMF and World Bank in favor of a truly cooperative development policy; alter the charters of the IMF and World Bank to permit the cancellation or restructuring of debt; and require AIDS Impact Reports of the IMF and World Bank.