Kenya To Spend $61M To Increase Antiretroviral Treatment Access, Health Ministry Says
Kenya's Ministry of Health on Sunday in a statement announced that the country will spend about $61 million next year to increase access to antiretroviral drugs, AFP/Yahoo! News reports. According to the health ministry, about 190,000 people living with HIV/AIDS have access to no-cost antiretrovirals, with an increase of 5,000 new people monthly.
The government -- with support from the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and other foreign donors -- will spend about $61 million to increase access to the drugs. The health ministry on Sunday said it will ensure there is a buffer stock of antiretrovirals for up to nine months. According to AFP/Yahoo! News, the number of people in need of antiretrovirals is estimated to increase by 60,000 to 250,000 people by next year (AFP/Yahoo! News, 4/6).
According to a 2007 UNAIDS report, HIV prevalence in Kenya has decreased from a high of 14% in the mid-1990s to 5% in 2006 (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 2/27). The disease has "overturned decades of health care gains" made in the country and threatens development efforts if its spread is not reversed, AFP/Yahoo! News reports (AFP/Yahoo! News, 4/6).