Danish Government Unveils Program to Fight HIV/AIDS in Africa
Danish government officials yesterday announced a new strategy aimed at fighting HIV/AIDS in Africa, Agence France-Presse reports. In a conference with African health officials, Danish leaders unveiled Denmark's "International Program of Action," which aims to "check the alarming rise" in HIV/AIDS incidence in Africa. Present at the conference were representatives from numerous countries and nongovernmental organizations, including Danish Cooperation Minister Anita Bay Bundegaard, South African Health Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, Ugandan Health Minister Omax Omeda and UNAIDS Executive Director Peter Piot (Agence France-Presse, 1/9). The Program of Action will be based on Denmark's new development and assistance strategy, titled Partnership 2000. The program will place the "highest priority" on preventive measures, especially those aimed at African youth. The strategy also plans to fund care and support efforts for children and youth affected by HIV/AIDS, and will confront the problem of children orphaned by the virus. Bundegaard said that she hoped to see the program integrated not only in the health and education sectors, but in other areas such as agriculture and transport. She also stressed the importance of "well-trained" and "properly paid" health officials in the fight against AIDS. Stating that "the right approaches can provide promising results," Bundegaard said that international organizations and African governments needed to work together to implement successful HIV/AIDS programs. While international governments and organizations must support the "plans, programs and policies" of national governments, "progress can only be achieved on the basis of national political commitment in each and every country," she concluded (Bundegaard speech, 1/9). To view Bundegaard's speech, go to http://www.um.dk/cgi-bin/dyn3nt/dyn3.exe?prog=preview&pageid=188&recordid=66&postid=49.This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.