News of the WeekHIV

French-Led Therapy Fund Kicks Off in Africa

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Science  14 May 1999:
Vol. 284, Issue 5417, pp. 1101
DOI: 10.1126/science.284.5417.1101a

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PARIS-- In the developing world, where 90% of the world's estimated 35 million HIV-infected people live, the high cost of antiviral drugs makes them virtually unobtainable, and death rates continue to climb (see next story). In December 1997, French health minister Bernard Kouchner launched a campaign to reduce this global inequity: He proposed the creation of an international fund to subsidize anti-HIV therapies in the developing world. Last month, after nearly a year and a half of often frustrating toil by Kouchner and his aides to raise money, the fund announced its first projects.