First Antiretroviral Rollout Report Released at People's Health Summit


5 July 2004

The First Monitoring Report of the Antiretroviral Rollout prepared by the ALP and TAC will be continually updated and improved. The draft can be downloaded from the TAC website:

http://www.tac.org.za/Documents/ARVRollout/DraftFirstARVrolloutReport-4July2004.doc

It was presented at the People's Health Summit (PHS) on July 3rd 2004. Since then the ALP has received new information and some minor corrections to the report. These will be added in the next few days. For further information contact Fatima Hassan of the AIDS Law Project on 083 279 9962.

The resolutions of the PHS will be published early next week. Below is the preamble to the resolutions:

"On July 2-4 2004 more than 530 delegates (including more than 80 health workers) representing over 60 organisations and institutions met at the first People’s Health Summit (PHS) to discuss the crisis and inequity in the health system and the roll-out of antiretroviral treatment.

Conference delegates expressed grave concern that in spite of many good policies, laws and programmes -- the public health service is in crisis and the quality of many services is in decline. This is an emergency and needs urgent solutions from government, the private health sector and civil society.

The PHS recognised the legacy of injustice and inequality of apartheid on the health service of our country and our people.

Regardless of the ANC’s vision of equality in access to health there is growing inequity between the health care received by people who can afford to use the private sector, and those whose poverty makes them largely or wholly dependent on the public sector. There are also growing inequalities between urban and rural areas: amongst other problems people in rural areas face understaffing of health facilities and large distances to travel.

The worthy vision of the public sector as being the lead provider of quality health care seems to have crumbled.

This crisis has come about as a result of a number of factors including: under-funding of public health, over-funding of private health, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, a total failure to train and re-train health workers, and a high degree of corruption and mismanagement with regards to the management of public health services.

Our struggle is for the rights to life, health-care, dignity, equality and social justice.

Refusing to recognise or confront this crisis is a violation of the principle of a better life for all. All the organizations at the People’s Health Summit committed to working with the Department of Health all levels to build a quality people’s health service."

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