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Pfizer to Unveil Free Drug Plan for S. Africa


NEW YORK (Reuters) - Pfizer, the world's leading drugmaker, will unveil a plan Friday to give away a $50 million 2-year supply of its expensive AIDS-related medicine, Diflucan, to South Africa, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday. Activists have pressured pharmaceutical companies to respond to the growing sub-Saharan Africa AIDS crisis by dropping prices on AIDS medications, the Journal said.

Pfizer's offer comes as the United Nations and World Health Organization reported that sub-Saharan Africa saw 3.8 million new HIV infections this year, bringing the total number of people with HIV in the region, the hardest-hit in the world, to 25.3 million. Under the deal, Pfizer will provide Diflucan, an agent that fights fungal infections, without charge to treat people with cryptococcal meningitis as well as an infection of the esophagus caused by Candida, which affects 20% to 40% of all AIDS patients.


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Information in this article was accurate in November 29, 2000. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.