Sabine Lösing

Access to AIDS Drugs for all is a Must

The XVII. International AIDS conference with the subject „Universal Action Now“ will take place from the 3rd to the 8th of August 2008 in Mexico City. It will include topics such as HIV prevention, drugs, medical care, and human rights. Party executive member Sabine Lösing explains what will be in the forefront of the conference:

Both the causes and the effects of the AIDS epidemic draw especially large connections to society. A life in poverty with poor food circumstances and little to no access to public health care service and other social security systems all favor the risk of infection.

Not only the education and prevention but also the handling of AIDS and numerous other health complications can only be successful within the framework of working public health systems. However, measures taken to ensure profit for the health industry through patent protection and the orientation of health care in the market mechanisms is often more important than the perception of health as a human right.

In comparison to other countries, Germany has a fairly low infection rate that can only be lowered further if the education and prevention of AIDS is not reduced and medical care is ensured for the entire population. Even though AIDS is a major threat to everyone, people, especially the younger generation, are losing interest in the initial negative effects of the so-called social and health reforms and how they worsen the state of those involved. This can be seen through a large escalation of petitions concerning the support of private help organizations.

DIE LINKE steps up Europe- and worldwide for the development and preservation of public health and living provisions and for the action of reducing world poverty. In order to create an opposition to brutal globalization, the first steps would include the introduction of Tobin’s tax and a multi-global debt relief for the poor countries of the world, and, especially those most affected by AIDS, universal access to life-saving drugs.

In the last 25 years, the AIDS infection has evolved into a worldwide epidemic and caused horrible personal grief for adults and children. More than 2.5 million people have become infected with the HIV virus in this past year alone. Over 33 million people currently live with the virus. Since the beginning of the epidemic in 1981, more than 25 million people have died from AIDS, of those around 2.1 million are from the year 2007 alone.

Around 6800 people around the world are infected daily with the virus and around 5700 people die per day from AIDS. As a result of AIDS, around 15 million children have become orphans. The countries in southern Africa are the epidemic’s center with more than two thirds of the population infected. People in this region also fall ill and die predominantly between the ages of 20 and 50 years. The large scale of the illness in poor southern countries puts the economic and societal maintenance of living in jeopardy.