Clinton Foundation Adds Kazakhstan to Consortium of Countries Receiving Low-Cost AIDS Drugs, Diagnostic Equipment
Former President Clinton and Kazakhstani Health Minister Erbolat Dossayev on Tuesday signed a memorandum that will add Kazakhstan to the Clinton Foundation's Procurement Consortium, a group of more than 40 countries that receive antiretroviral drugs and HIV/AIDS diagnostic equipment at reduced prices through the foundation, AFP/Yahoo! News Australia & NZ reports (AFP/Yahoo! News Australia & NZ, 9/8). According to the Clinton Foundation, the prices of the antiretrovirals provided under the consortium are 50% to 90% lower than the lowest price usually available, and the costs for testing machines, training, reagents and maintenance are as much as 80% less expensive than market prices. Speaking in Almaty, Kazakhstan, Clinton said, "Kazakhstan is at a crucial point in its fight against HIV/AIDS, and this agreement will make the investments of the Ministry of Health more cost-effective and will enable the government to reach more HIV-positive people and save more lives" (Clinton Foundation release, 9/6). Kazakhstani President Nursultan Nazarbaev said, "The memorandum that was signed today brings hope to those who suffer from AIDS, and we can say loudly that they can live their normal lives further on without fear of death; now, they think they necessarily will die." Kazakhstan has recorded about 4,600 HIV cases, but health officials estimate there are about 20,000 HIV-positive people living in the country (Saidazimova, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 9/7).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.