South Africa Unveils Dramatic New AIDS Policy

Beyond the Veil| South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma pledged today that his country wil treat all HIV-positive babies and will increase HIV testing and treatment for everyone.

President Zuma’s position is a welcome turning point for South Africa, following former President Thabo Mbeki’s position that the link between HIV and AIDS was unproven. President Mbeki promoted beet and garlic treatments for AIDS and is credited with the unnecessary deaths of over 300,000 people.

Key points of the initiative include:

- A goal of getting AIDS drugs for 80 percent of infected patients by 2011.

- The US will give South Africa $120 million in funding, in response to a request from President Zuma.

About 1 in 10 people in South Africa is infected with the AIDS virus. UNAIDS estimates that 14.1 million children in sub-Saharan Africa lost one or both parents to AIDS last year. via ABC News

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