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NLM AIDSLINE
Medicines and quality care for aII/a matter of political will.
Siquiros JH; Bonfil C; Brito A; Figueroa M; Diaz A; Monsivais C
December 30, 1998
Int Conf AIDS. 1998;12:469 (abstract no. 24145). Unique Identifier :

ISSUE: Those living with HIV/AIDS in Mexico and in most countries in Latin America and the Caribbean still face tremendous problems concerning the access to integral therapies. Most AIDS specialists affirm that an early and adequate treatment doses improve consistently the life quality of PWA's. Yet our governments explain their reluctance to give such treatments with arguments of financial rentability. To our authorities we are just figures and statistics. Governments such as Brazil and Argentina have changed their attitudes and made free access to anti-HIV drugs possible, although this has only been achieved through a strong political pressure from PWA's. PROJECT: In November 1997, a proposal was presented to the Mexican Congress, in which a special budget was claimed for the purchase of antiretroviral drugs. This proposal, based on official figures, points out that the social security system in Mexico should make consolidated purchases in order to get substantial savings, and should obtain from the federal government at least 45 million dollars to guarantee therapies for all PWA's in Mexico. RESULTS: Our government has stated that by 1998, around 11,809 persons with HIV/AIDS will not have social security. This represents 50% for the Mexican population touched by the virus, without considering undetected cases, particularly among rural and indigenous populations. The Ministry of Health created a fiduciary as an alternative, however it only has $3.7 million US, to cover all uninsured population. LESSONS LEARNED: Mexico spends of money rescuing banks from self-induced bankruptcy or destining enormous budgets to the army or to political campaigns. Stigmatization still prevails in Mexico and this makes it hard to get clear official political will against AIDS. Nonetheless, it has been sufficiently proved that our country has the economic power to pay for those therapies we so urgently need to keep on living.

MEETING ABSTRACTS Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/DRUG THERAPY/*ECONOMICS Government Health Expenditures/TRENDS *Health Policy Human HIV Infections/DRUG THERAPY/*ECONOMICS *Politics Quality of Health Care/*LEGISLATION & JURISPRUD

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