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Trans-Pacific Partnership Could Affect HIV/AIDS Drug Prices, Huffington Post Reports

The Huffington Post, as part of a collaboration on trade issues with the Dylan Ratigan Show, examines how “a new trade deal the Obama administration is pushing to complete with Vietnam and seven other Pacific nations threatens to seriously hinder both U.S. and international efforts to combat AIDS — including the government’s own efforts in Vietnam.” Under the Trans-Pacific Partnership, “U.S. negotiators are seeking to impose a set of restrictive intellectual property laws that would help American drug companies secure long-term monopolies overseas,” according to leaked documents, the Huffington Post writes.

PEPFAR ART Cost Model Data Presented To PEPFAR Scientific Advisory Board

“For every 1,000 patient-years of PEPFAR-supported HIV treatment provided, 228 fewer HIV patients die, 449 fewer children become orphans, 61 fewer sexual HIV transmissions occur and 26 fewer ‘vertical’ transmissions (e.g. mother-to-child) occur,” John Blanford of the CDC told the PEPFAR Scientific Advisory Board in Washington, D.C., on September 14,…

Britain To Cut Bilateral Aid For Global HIV/AIDS Projects By Nearly One-Third By 2015

Britain is cutting bilateral aid for HIV/AIDS projects in developing countries by 32 percent, from 59.9 million pounds to 41 million pounds, between now and 2015, according to data from the Department for International Development (DfID), the Guardian reports. “The drop in support comes despite a 92 percent rise in Britain’s bilateral aid for global health, from 376 million pounds to 723 million pounds by 2015, when reproductive, maternal and newborn health will absorb 64 percent of DfID’s global health funding,” the newspaper writes.

Roundtable Participants Address Need For Action Against HIV/AIDS

A UNAIDS feature story reports on a roundtable discussion held at the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research (CAPRISA) in South Africa last month, which “looked at ways of maximizing the opportunities created by scientific research around HIV prevention in the past year to reach the country’s target of halving…

CD4 Quick Test Helps Increase Number Of Patients Who Return For HIV Test Results

A new quick test to determine the CD4 levels of individuals who test positive for HIV “resulted in a substantial increase” in the percentage of people returning to a clinic get those results, according to a study conducted in Mozambique and published last week in the Lancet, the New York Times reports. “Before quick testing was available, 42 percent of infected patients returned to learn their CD4 count at a subsequent visit. After point-of-care testing began, 78 percent of infected patients were evaluated — that is, almost twice as many infected people took this important first step toward drug treatment,” the newspaper writes (Bakalar, 10/3).

Use Of Injectable Hormone Contraceptive May Double Risk Of Contracting, Transmitting HIV, Study Shows

“The most popular contraceptive for women in eastern and southern Africa, a hormone shot given every three months, appears to double the risk the women will become infected with HIV,” according to a study involving 3,800 sero-discordant couples in Botswana, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia, the New York Times reports. The study, led by researchers at the University of Washington and published Monday in the journal Lancet Infectious Diseases, also found that when the contraceptive was “used by HIV-positive women, their male partners are twice as likely to become infected than if the women had used no contraception,” the newspaper writes. In addition, the study “found that oral contraceptives appeared to increase risk of HIV infection and transmission, but the number of pill users in the study was too small to be considered statistically significant, the authors said,” according to the New York Times.

Addressing High-Risk Groups, Couples Counseling In HIV Prevention

In this post in the Center for Global Development’s “Global Health Policy” blog, Mead Over, a senior fellow at the center, follows up on a post last week in which he wrote that a panel of senior economists commissioned by the Rush Foundation was to address the question of how to…

Kenya National AIDS Program Considering Mandatory HIV Testing

VOA News examines how Kenya’s National Aids Control Council and STI Control Program (NASCOP) is considering proposing mandatory HIV testing for adults and children who seek medical care for other conditions, noting that some AIDS organizations are expressing ethical concerns because of continuing stigma and discrimination. For now, “fears of mandatory testing in Kenya are premature, as Kenyan law currently bans such practices,” the news service writes (Onyiego, 9/30).

Time To Increase Efforts Against HIV/AIDS, TB

In a Huffington Post opinion piece, Kolleen Bouchane, director of ACTION, asks whether President Barack Obama will “heed Archbishop [Desmond] Tutu’s call to action” in a recent Washington Post opinion piece “and do his part to end AIDS.” She says, “While campaigning, President Obama promised to expand PEPFAR ‘by $1 billion a year in new money over the next five years’ and provide $50 billion by 2013 to fight HIV/AIDS worldwide. We are not on track to see even those promises become reality. We are not on track for the leadership to change the course of HIV and AIDS that Tutu has called for.”