Public-Private Partnerships ‘Best Way’ To Combat HIV/AIDS in Africa, Opinion Piece Says
Public-private partnerships are the "best way and perhaps the only sustainable way" to effectively combat HIV/AIDS in Africa, former Rep. J.C. Watts (R-Okla.) writes in an Arizona Daily Star opinion piece. Although the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief -- which aims to spend $15 billion over five years to fight HIV/AIDS in some African and Caribbean countries -- has "enlisted" several large corporations in its efforts, "we should remember that many smaller, non-profit groups with relatively small resources provide vital resources in the AIDS fight," Watts says. For example, the Safe Blood for Africa Foundation, which tests blood to limit HIV transmission during blood transfusions, "can save 328,000 lives each year" at a cost of $5 million, Watts says. Although the blood testing program "does cost money," $5 million is "only a fraction of the billions that we now spend for Africa's governments to treat" people living with HIV/AIDS, according to Watts. "No one" is arguing that governments should not spend money to combat HIV/AIDS, but "it's also time to harness the resourcefulness of our private organizations to end this horror," Watts concludes (Watts, Arizona Daily Star, 4/18).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.