U.S. Should Adopt ‘Peace Corps Approach’ to Global AIDS Fight by Sending Doctors To Treat African Children, Editorial Says
The United States needs to adopt a "Peace Corps approach to AIDS" for Africa in which it sends its most talented medical professionals to the continent to treat children, a Houston Chronicle editorial says (Houston Chronicle, 7/1). Pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and Baylor College of Medicine last week announced a $40 million initiative to treat children living with HIV/AIDS in developing countries by sending as many as 250 physicians to Africa for a two-year program to train local health care workers and treat HIV-positive children (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/27). Under this so-called "AIDS Peace Corps" -- which should be viewed as a "crucial diplomatic effort" -- U.S. doctors are expected to treat 80,000 African children over five years, beginning next summer in Burkina Faso, Lesotho, Swaziland and Malawi, the Chronicle says. Although Fitzhugh Mullan, a professor of pediatrics at George Washington University, proposed a similar approach for fighting HIV/AIDS in developing countries in April, the Bush administration "has not acknowledged his report," according to the editorial. BCM and BMS "have launched an admirable and decisive attack on pediatric AIDS clinic by clinic," the editorial says, adding that the administration "needs to follow them with fast and massive action -- country by country" (Houston Chronicle, 7/1).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.