The Peach

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Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Protecting The Presidential Plan Trumps Death

The Peach has come across this breaking story from the AP wire. It is being reported that not only was the government's research on the drug nevirapine, used to protect African babies from getting AIDS from infected mothers, flawed, but that the premier govenment health research agency buried the information so the distribution of the drug would not be scuttled, protecting Bush's $500 million plan to distribute the drug across Africa. Apparently, hundreds of thousands of doses have already been administered to African mothers and babies under the Bush plan. The Bush Plan, announced in a Rose Garden announcement in June 2002, held nevirapine as its centerpiece. At the time Bush heralded this commitment as the "first by any government, anywhere."

The flaw of concern is whether those patients who have received the single doses have developed resistance to further AIDS treatments. What this means is that patients will not be able to use the drug or others in its class again when their AIDS worsens.

A White House spokesperson, responding to the new evidence on the drug, stated that, "The president's mission is to try to stop the spread of AIDS in Africa and to come at it from a new angle, and that is what this is all about." The Peach recognizes this "new angle" to be using innocent Africans as human guinea pigs.

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