Stuart Loory, Lee Hills Chair in Free-Press Studies, Missouri School of Journalism: HIV and AIDS, which affects some 33 million people around the world, is no longer the talked-about issue it was just a few years ago. There is no vaccine in sight for this viral infection, although researchers have not stopped trying to develop one. In the meantime, the way to control the impact of the disease is through the use of antiretroviral drugs that slow down or stop the spread of the disease in the human body. The drugs are expensive, costing up to $19,000 a year per treated person in the United States but less than $100 a year in developing countries. Still, in a country like Uganda, it costs $11,500 a year to treat AIDS patients, and the number of newly infected far exceeds the number who are getting the drugs. Major donors from wealthy countries around the world are losing interest in combating AIDS. They say the money could be better spent preventing malaria, typhus or tuberculosis, that more lives can be saved with the same amount of money or less and that in these economic times, giving cannot be increased. So in some African countries, new HIV/AIDS cases cannot be treated while older ones hold on. Treatment of AIDS seems to be coming under control in Uganda, but there are stories that the problem is once again growing more serious. Why is that?
GLOBAL JOURNALIST: Is HIV/AIDS still a global issue? How is it being treated?
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