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Government-funded anti-retroviral therapy for HIV/AIDS: new ethical challenges

Amar Jesani, S P Kalantri, George Thomas, Sandhya Srinivasan

DOI: 10.20529/IJME.2004.038


Abstract

In September 2003, an international initiative was launched to treat 3 million people living with HIV/AIDS by 2005-the 3-by-5 initiative. According to WHO estimates, 95% of the 40 million people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHA) are in developing countries. Less than 8% of those needing anti-retroviral therapy (ART) receive it-compared with 84% in the West. The Director General of WHO described the lack of access to ART as ‘a global health emergency’ and declared: ‘To deliver anti-retroviral treatment to the millions who need it, we must change the way we think and change the way we act.’

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