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Medical News & Perspectives
December 1, 1999

Poor Nations Ravaged by AIDS Need the Right Resources Now

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JAMA. 1999;282(21):1992-1994. doi:10.1001/jama.282.21.1992-JMN1201-2-1

Vienna—In this city rich with the history of Mozart and Strauss, diverse stakeholders in the AIDS epidemic met recently to compose a new score for bringing prevention and treatment to poor nations ravaged by deadly HIV.

During the Third International Conference on Healthcare Resource Allocation for HIV/AIDS and Other Life-Threatening Illnesses, dozens of speakers from around the world pointed to inequities involving the epidemic, now nearly two decades old. Expensive drug combinations prolong and improve life for many with HIV infection in developed nations, but impoverished countries suffer staggering economic losses and sharp declines in lifespan from HIV. At the same time, ease and frequency of global travel facilitate the spread of HIV, while global expansions in trade and commerce raise questions about the roles of corporations and governments in bringing treatment to the poorest of the poor.

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