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BMJ. British Medical Journal. 2004 Jul 17; 329:129.A huge international effort is under way to get lifesaving antiretroviral treatment to three million people with AIDS in poor countries by the end of 2005, said the World Health Organization, but added that its six month campaign had fallen short of interim targets. In all, 400 000 AIDS patients in developing countries were receiving antiretrovirals when WHO launched its "3 by 5 strategy." That figure has edged up to 440 000, said WHO's progress report, presented at the international AIDS conference this week. "Although this was disappointing, the absolute increase of 40,000 people in a few months dose indicate that country and international efforts to scale up HIV- AIDS treatment are resulting in progress report. The progress report is likely to fuel critics of WHO's 3 by 5 campaign, who contend that it is overambitious, poorly managed, and too focused on lowering drug prices. (excerpt)
Global AIDSLink. 2001 Aug-Sep; (69):14, 16.After recognizing the need to include the experiences of all regions, countries and communities addressing the fight against HIV/AIDS, the United Nations embarked on a unique process to include hundreds of NGOs in UNGASS. They instituted a unique accreditation process for this session and then witnessed an unprecedented number of non- ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council) accredited organizations take part in the Special Session. Since most AIDS-focused organizations are not members of ECOSOC, many of these NGOs would have been unable to participate in the UN events under the traditional set of regulations. Nearly a thousand individuals representing a host of NGOs from around the world participated in UNGASS, making this one of the largest events of its type at the UN. (excerpt)
NATIONAL MEDICAL JOURNAL OF INDIA. 1994 Nov-Dec; 7(6):288-91.Salient points of AIDS control in India are summarized. An autonomous national AIDS control organization has been set up, which received a sizable loan from the World Bank. As a result, the central health budget became skewed with one-fourth of its expenditures going for AIDS and not enough spent on general health services. Among issues inadequately addressed are: 1) HIV surveillance; 2) diagnosis of AIDS; 3) appropriate and safe medical care; 4) wasteful expenditure; 5) educating health workers; and 6) blood bank services. HIV surveillance and testing centers have been attached to a few large hospitals and medical colleges, but more testing and treatment services will be needed. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends testing only after informed consent has been obtained; however, in India this is impossible because of the high rate of illiteracy. Instead, counseling is provided by special social workers and testing is prescribed by doctors. Special AIDS clinics might be the solution, although they lead to isolation and stigmatization of patients. Doctors and nurses should be made aware about the importance of informed consent and counseling to encourage voluntary and anonymous testing. The present WHO definition of AIDS for diagnosis is too general and is based on the African experience. Its use may lead to misdiagnosis of many cases of tuberculosis, diarrhea, and malnutrition as AIDS. Clinical criteria applicable to the Indian reality need to be developed urgently. Private practitioners have also entered HIV testing, but often they rely only on the ELISA test without confirmation which might result in a high rate of false positives. General medical care of AIDS cases have to be strengthened with routine sterilization to avoid wasteful expenditures, health workers have to be reeducated, blood bank services need to be streamlined, and more AIDS-related research is also required.