NPR’s ‘All Things Considered’ Reviews South Africa’s Appeal of Ruling Ordering Government to Supply Antiretrovirals to All HIV-Positive Pregnant Women
Although South African President Thabo Mbeki has "never actually said" that HIV is not the cause of AIDS, his questioning of the link between HIV and AIDS has prevented health officials from speaking publicly in support of a national policy on providing antiretrovirals, NPR's "All Things Considered" reported on Friday. Last month, South Africa's High Court ordered the government to provide antiretroviral drugs to all HIV-positive pregnant women to prevent mother-to-child transmission of the virus. However, the Ministry of Health is appealing the decision in the nation's Constitutional Court, "saying the judicial branch doesn't have the authority to tell the executive branch how to implement legislation." South Africa's HIV/AIDS treatment policy is now "caught up in a major political question ... [of] whether the political forces in the country will let one man have the power over life and death" (Wilson, "All Things Considered," NPR, 1/4). An audio version of the segment is available online.This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.