Former President Clinton’s Focus on Pediatric AIDS Forces Others To Confront Issue, Editorial Says
Former President Clinton's focus on providing treatment to HIV-positive children worldwide "is forcing others to confront the fact that we are needlessly leaving children to die," a New York Times editorial says (New York Times, 4/18). Clinton last week announced that the Clinton Foundation is pledging $5 million to provide treatment to approximately 10,000 children living with HIV/AIDS in 10 countries and $5 million to expand the foundation's treatment efforts in rural areas. The foundation plans to spend about $2 million on pediatric antiretroviral drugs and provide $3 million to clinics in 10 countries where local doctors can be trained to treat children. Pediatric medicines have been ordered for China, the Dominican Republic, Lesotho, Rwanda and Tanzania, and treatment in China is expected to begin as early as next month. The foundation, with the help of UNICEF and other organizations, aims to expand the initiative to several other countries by the end of this year and provide treatment for 60,000 children by the end of 2006 (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 4/12). Pediatric HIV/AIDS "gets little attention" because "[f]ew children in rich countries are born with HIV," but more than 2.2 million children worldwide are living with the disease and more than 500,000 children die of AIDS-related illnesses annually, according to the Times. The "technical expertise" of the Clinton Foundation, as well as Clinton's "Rolodex and persuasive talents," should help "fill gaps" in the pediatric HIV/AIDS programs supported by the foundation, the editorial says (New York Times, 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.