Chapter

An Epidemic of Disputes

Didier Fassin

in When Bodies Remember

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2007 | ISBN: 9780520244672
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520940451 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520244672.003.0002
An Epidemic of Disputes

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Significant attention has been devoted, locally and internationally, to issues raised by South Africa over HIV and AIDS. Politics has taken center stage in the South African response to the AIDS epidemic with the publication of the open letter from President Mbeki. The letter states that whatever lessons may be drawn from the West about the issue of HIV/AIDS, a simple superimposition of the Western experience on African reality is absurd and illogical. An ambitious program to fight AIDS combining information programs, distribution of condoms, treatment of venereal diseases, and campaigns to stop discrimination against patients was launched. The budget initially allocated to AIDS programs amounted to only 20 million rands, but it was announced that it would soon be multiplied by five to include the international aid from the European Union and USAID. It was declared on World AIDS Day, December 1, 1997, Odi stadium, Mabopane, that dying patients willing to take responsibility for their actions should not be prevented from using the still-unapproved Virodene drug.

Keywords: AIDS epidemic; venereal diseases; USAID; World AIDS Day; Virodene drug

Chapter.  19577 words. 

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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