Animal Care Giver Provides Services to HIV-Positive, Abandoned South Africans
Animal rescuer Cora Bailey, founder of the International Fund for Animal Welfare's project Community Led Animal Welfare, has extended her rescue services to HIV-positive South Africans who have been abandoned by their families, the Wall Street Journal reports. While CLAW is dedicated to bringing veterinary care to sick, deserted animals in South African townships, Bailey's "focus is shifting from pets to people as AIDS ravages local communities already battling poverty, ignorance and a government health care system in shambles," the Journal says. Despite the wide publicity about AIDS and education campaigns in South Africa, the disease "remains shrouded in secrecy and denial," and its "victims are rejected by relatives and friends just when victims need comfort, compassion and support." When Bailey finds homeless people with HIV while searching for abandoned animals, she transports them to an AIDS hospice where they may be fed, bathed and provided with basic medical care. "How can you treat animals and ignore the sick people who own them and live with them?" she asked, pointing out that she founded CLAW "in the belief that the needs of animals and people are the same." While the South African government says it has implemented health care programs to treat STDs, in the "poorest" townships Bailey is "the closest thing to a medical service many people have ever seen," the Journal reports (Block, Wall Street Journal, 7/9).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.