Friday, October 07, 2011

Aids Treatment, Is It Worth The Investment?

What does the long-term future hold for the global fight against Aids and HIV? With a drop in funding, it is clear that Aids is a in a losing battle with wealthy governments. Cuts of course will be made in all areas, but many Aids campaigners are hopeful in that the UK will make up for the deficit in contributions to the Global Fund to fight Aids, TB, and Malaria.

Campaigners and treatment providers in poor countries do believe that if funding were to cease, there is concern regarding potential resistance to the Aids treatment if not administered continuously. This will no doubt set them ten steps back from where they first began.

With that said, a new study published by the free-access journal PloS One revealed that investing in Aids treatment programs will not only be the right thing to do to save lives, but it also makes an economic case in that it actually saves money. Treatments were given to 3.5 million people in 98 countries. The results showed that the benefits far outweighed the costs. Individuals who received treatment had a restored sense of productivity of those able to work again and are more able to provide and care for their families.

Spending $14.2 billion may seem a bit much to assist 3.5 million people with antiretroviral drugs, but with large health gains generated and economic benefits of treatment, it could more than double their initial investment. So, is it worth it?

-Georisa Chang

Source: The Guardian