sexta-feira, junho 29, 2007
21 condenados no Cazaquistão por infecção de 118 crianças com VIH
Um tribunal do Cazaquistão ordenou a prisão de 17 profissionais de saúde acusados de negligência, ao permitirem que 118 bebés e crianças, assim como 14 mães, fossem infectados com o vírus da sida, anunciou ontem a AFP.
Os acusados eram 21, mas a antiga directora do departamento regional de saúde e outros três funcionários viram as suas penas suspensas, o que gerou uma onda de contestação entre os pais das vítimas. Já faleceram dez crianças nos hospitais de Shymkent, cidade do Sul do país.
quarta-feira, junho 27, 2007
Ministro da Saúde anuncia criação do Fórum Nacional da Sociedade Civil para o VIH/SIDA
Durante o discurso proferido no encontro ADIS, dia 19 de Junho de 2007, o Senhor Ministro da Saúde, anunciou a instituição este ano do FNSC
Citamos alguns trechos do discurso e esperamos a concretização.
“É reconhecido o papel importante das organizações da sociedade civil no combate à infecção VIH/sida, enquanto líderes em activismo, advocacia, empoderamento e disponibilização de informação preventiva e serviços de apoio social. Estas têm sido capazes de envolver pessoas que vivem com VIH/sida nas suas actividades, ajudando a lidar com fenómenos como o estigma e a discriminação associados à infecção.
De facto, a infecção VIH/sida exige uma resposta organizada da sociedade e dos governos em particular, pelo que as organizações da sociedade civil desempenham um papel chave de parceria no desenvolvimento de uma resposta alargada, através da sua experiência, os seus exemplos de boas práticas e a sua capacidade de implementar programas e disseminar informação, particularmente junto de populações com menor acesso à informação e aos serviços de saúde.
A articulação entre os organismos governamentais e a sociedade face ao desafio da infecção pressupõe, para além do apoio financeiro, um efectivo envolvimento e participação da sociedade civil no combate à epidemia.
Assim, decorrente da comunicação da Comissão ao Conselho e ao Parlamento Europeu relativa à luta contra o VIH/sida na União Europeia e nos países vizinhos 2006 – 2009, no que respeita à participação da sociedade civil, decidiu a Coordenação Nacional para a Infecção VIH/sida/Alto Comissariado da Saúde no âmbito do Plano de Acção 2007 – 2008, criar o Fórum Nacional da Sociedade Civil para o VIH/sida (FNSC/VIH).
Integrarão este Fórum organizações não governamentais e da sociedade civil e associações de pessoas que vivem com VIH/sida, com o objectivo de garantir a sua participação efectiva no desenvolvimento e implementação das políticas e programas nacionais”.
Raltegravir na FDA
FDA Priority Review Granted for ISENTRESS™ (raltegravir), Merck's
Investigational Integrase Inhibitor for HIV
Investigational Integrase Inhibitor a New Class of Oral HIV Medication
WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J., June 27, 2007 -- Merck & Co., Inc. announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted the New Drug Application (NDA) for ISENTRESS™ (raltegravir, previously known as MK-0518). Data in the NDA support the proposed use of ISENTRESS in combination with other antiretroviral agents for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in treatment-experienced patients with evidence of HIV-1 replication despite ongoing antiretroviral therapy (ART).
The FDA granted ISENTRESS priority review status, a designation for investigational products that address unmet medical needs. Under the priority review designation, the FDA is expected to review and act on the NDA for ISENTRESS within six months of submission. Merck anticipates FDA action by mid-October and as planned is also moving forward with regulatory filings in countries outside of the United States.
If approved, ISENTRESS would be the first in a new class of antiretroviral agents called integrase inhibitors that inhibit the insertion of HIV DNA into human DNA. Inhibiting integrase from performing this essential function blocks the ability of the virus to replicate and infect new cells. There are drugs in use that inhibit two other enzymes critical to the HIV replication process – protease and reverse transcriptase – but currently no approved drugs inhibit integrase.
terça-feira, junho 26, 2007
Shame on Abbott
Prevenção e combate ao HIV/SIDA é compromisso para a vida dos Médicos do Mundo em Moçambique
|Os nove projectos de prevenção e combate ao HIV/SIDA dos Médicos do Mundo em Moçambique são "um compromisso para a vida" e custam cerca de 90 mil euros cada, disse à Lusa um coordenador daquela ONG portuguesa.|
Investigadores colocam em causa funcionamento do vírus da SIDA
|Cientistas britânicos e americanos colocam em causa a forma como o vírus da SIDA destrói o sistema imunitário, de acordo com um estudo publicado na revista mensal americana PLoS Medicine.|
Até agora, os cientistas pensavam que as células infectadas produziam novas partículas de HIV, provocando a activação de novas células que, à sua volta, eram infectadas e destruídas, fragilizando assim gradualmente o sistema de defesa do corpo humano.
Porém, de acordo com os investigadores americanos e britânicos que efectuaram o estudo, se esta hipótese fosse correcta, as células infectadas deveriam ser destruídas muito mais rapidamente do que o são na realidade.
Logo, avançam os investigadores, existe um "processo lento" na rarefacção destas células e a identificação desse processo "fornecerá um resumo essencial da natureza do HIV e permitirá potenciais novas abordagens em matéria de terapêutica".
segunda-feira, junho 25, 2007
Moçambique: Gays querem reconhecimento
O cientista político Miguel, que pediu omissão do apelido, conta que em algumas festas gays em Maputo já se observou uma presença significativa de homossexuais, embora não haja nenhum registo quantitativo.
Entretanto, ambos reconhecem que esta falta de identidade faz com que os gays sejam ignorados em decisões governamentais, como o Plano Estratégico Nacional de Combate ao HIV/Sida 2005-2009, que não cita os homossexuais como uma parcela da população que merece atenção.
“Por que fazer campanhas para um grupo invisível?”, questiona Silva.
Em Março, a Comissão Internacional para os Direitos Humanos de Gays e Lésbicas divulgou o estudo “Off the Map” (“Fora do Mapa”), que mostra a exclusão dos homossexuais nos programas de HIV/Sida na África.
O relatório destaca que neste continente, onde vivem cerca de 60 por cento de todos os seropositivos do mundo, “há um silêncio no que se refere à infecção do HIV entre os homossexuais”.
Moçambique: Fábrica de ARVs é viável, falta financiador para US$23 milhões
Este estudo, realizado pela Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, apresenta 144 alternativas de investimento. A ideia principal seria ampliar as instalações duma fábrica já existente na província de Maputo.
Entretanto, esta informação causou um "mal entendido" quando a Agência Reuters e a South African Press Association divulgaram respectivamente que, segundo o jornal Notícias e a Rádio de Moçambique, medias locais, o Brasil iria financiar a construção desta fábrica, avaliada em 23 milhões de dólares norte-americanos.
"Fiquei surpreso com esta notícia", disse Orlando Melembe, assistente de Cooperação Técnica da Embaixada do Brasil em Maputo. "A informação foi um pouco deturpada", acrescentou ao PlusNews.
Em um comunicado de imprensa, a embaixada brasileira destaca que o compromisso é de "transferir a tecnologia de produção, capacitar pessoal técnico e auxiliar o governo moçambicano na busca de financiamento para a implantação de projecto da fábrica."
Quanto ao financiamento, Melembe diz que os programas de cooperação da Alemanha e da França em Moçambique já se mostraram favoráveis.
Para uma população de aproximadamente 184 milhões, o Brasil tem uma seroprevalência de 0.7 por cento e destaca-se pela distribuição gratuita de antiretrovirais para os cerca de 160 mil brasileiros que precisam destes medicamentos.
Em Moçambique, onde a seroprevalência é de 16.2 por cento, 57.440 pessoas recebem antiretrovirais, o que corresponde apenas 24 por cento dos que precisam.
Segundo o estudo brasileiro, esta fábrica proporcionaria a Moçambique desenvolvimentos nas áreas da ciência, tecnologia, geração de renda e emprego.
Recolha do Viracept
* ALERTA DE SEGURANÇA DO INFARMED
Plano de acção na sequência da recolha do medicamento Viracept e recomendação da suspensão da A.I.M:
"A cannabis não é um problema de saúde pública preocupante"
A Europa mergulhou numa fase de silêncio em torno do problema das drogas, afirma Domingo Comas, sociólogo espanhol especialista em toxicodependência que esteve esta semana em Lisboa num congresso sobre o tema. Mais: o consumo de drogas é visto cada vez mais como tendo poucos riscos. Preocupante, na opinião do autor do livro Uso de Drogas na Juventude, é o facto de os sistemas de tratamento europeus estarem ainda centrados na heroína, estando-se longe de ter tratamentos eficazes para a dependência da cocaína.
Espanha dá 1 milhão EUR para vacinas
Espanha no Fundo Global em Angola
Spain is elected as a member for the Mechanism of National Coordination for the Global Fund Against Malaria, TB and HIV/AIDS in Angola
The Spanish Agency for International Cooperation (AECI) has been elected as representative of the bilateral cooperation to participate in the mechanism of national coordination of the Global Fund Against Malaria, Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. This election implies an acknowledgement to the important contribution of
The Global Fund iniciated its activities in
(Source: AECI, June, 2007)
Etiquetas: Fundo Global
Marcha do orgulho LGBT em Lisboa
Eram quase seis da tarde quando, depois de dizerem o sim, Sofia e Ricardo saíram da Igreja de Nossa Senhora da Encarnação, em Lisboa, e foram surpreendidos por uma manifestação de cor-de-rosa, amarelo e laranja. A noiva, de branco vestida, estendeu os dedos num "v" de vitória, mostrando que simpatizava com quem pedia "sem atraso, sem demora, casamento civil agora", e puxou o marido para um beijo simbólico, rodeado de gays, lésbicas e transexuais que gritavam, entusiasmados, "nem menos, nem mais, direitos iguais".
quinta-feira, junho 21, 2007
Resistência humana a um retrovírus é em parte responsável por vulnerabilidade à sida
|A resistência do corpo humano a um retrovírus que infectou os chimpanzés e outros primatas, desenvolvido há três ou quatro milhões de anos, pode ser responsável pela vulnerabilidade do homem ao vírus da Sida, segundo um estudo hoje publicado.|
O principal autor deste estudo, que surge na revista Science de 22 de Junho, acrescenta que "no entanto descobrimos que, ao longo da evolução dos primatas, a imunidade a este vírus, chamado «Pan troglodytes endogenous retrovirus ou PtERV1», pode ter-nos tornado mais vulneráveis ao vírus da Sida".
Portugal assume combate ao VIH como uma das prioridades para presidência UE
|Portugal assume combate ao VIH como uma das prioridades para presidência UE|
|O ministro da Saúde, Correia de Campos, assegurou que o combate à infecção do Vírus da Imunodeficiência Humana (VIH) vai constituir uma das prioridades da agenda da presidência portuguesa da União Europeia para a área da saúde.|
O governante adiantou que o problema do VIH estava "esquecido e voltou a fazer parte das preocupações políticas" da União.
quarta-feira, junho 20, 2007
FDA avança com maraviroc
Dum activista americano:
You may have noticed that this was the shortest press release you’ve ever seen for what looked like the approval of a new drug. This may be the first time some have heard this word “approvable” used. It’s not a mistake or typo. It is different than “approved.” Maraviroc has been declared “approvable” but it is not yet “approved.” This means that the FDA has agreed that the drug has been shown to be safe and effective, but that there are still other issues that need to be worked out with the company before they are permitted to sell the drug. The FDA was required by law to “respond” by today to Pfizer’s application. This is their response.
The main issue still under debate is the label indication. This includes the question of the type of patient the drug is being approved for, and maybe include the question of whether or not the Trophile diagnostic assay will be recommended or required before prescribing the drug. There may also be other issues as well.
It is not unusual for the FDA to issue an “approvable” letter instead of a formal approval, but it has never before happened with an HIV drug. In general, the FDA has gone right to “approved” for drugs that treat people with life threatening illnesses. In this case, I think they had hoped to finish the discussion about the label by today but they weren’t able to do so. So the real “approval” still awaits us. When the FDA issues an “approvable” letter in other, not so serious diseases, it is sometimes followed by announcement of requirements for additional studies. That is very unlikely to be the case here. The unfinished business, from the FDA’s point of view, is about the label indication.This also affects the announcement of the price. The final price won’t be set until the label indication is firmed up, as this will affect likely sales of the drug. I don’t know if the approval will come in a few days or a few weeks, though I’m inclined to think it’s only a few days off. But there is no question that the drug will be approved. Just not today...
For immediate release
June 20, 2007
We continue our discussions with the FDA to address outstanding questions and finalize the product labeling as soon as possible. Pfizer is committed to making maraviroc available to the thousands of patients with HIV whose virus has become resistant to one or more currently available treatment options.
To date, more than 2,000 patients worldwide have received or are currently receiving treatment with maraviroc through clinical trials. Pfizer has also established an expanded access program (EAP) in 30 countries. The EAP is a clinical study that provides maraviroc in countries to patients who have limited treatment options prior to approval.
Pfizer is currently in the process of submitting marketing applications around the world to make maraviroc available globally.
Campanha "Adesão à terapêutica"
"Adesão à terapêutica" é o nome da campanha de publicidade desenvolvida em conjunto, numa iniciativa inédita, pela Associação Nacional de Farmácias, a Associação Portuguesa da Indústria Farmacêutica, a Ordem dos Farmacêuticos e a Ordem dos Médicos, que terá início no dia 20 do mês de Junho em todo o País.
Um estudo recentemente divulgado demonstrou que 30% dos adultos portugueses não cumprem a prescrição médica até ao fim.
LGV: uma infecção sexualmente transmissível em crescendo na Europa
A Unidade de DST do Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical (IHMT) e a Associação ILGA Portugal lançam a primeira campanha de prevenção e rastreio do Linfogranuloma Venéreo (LGV) que inclui aquele que é o primeiro desdobrável em Português sobre esta infecção sexualmente transmissível (IST).
Abbott ataca Act-Up Paris (4)
Most likely, Abbott doesn’t have a public relations strategy. The drugmaker continually makes decisions seemingly without regard to appearance. Intoxicated with the notion that playing harball will send messages to opponents, Abbott repeatedly undermines big pharma’s effort to portray itself as caring about patients. Filing such a lawsuit against people who clamor for AIDS drugs, however, sends the opposite message. In this case, a drugmaker is acting up.
segunda-feira, junho 18, 2007
Abbott ataca Act-Up Paris (3)
Abbott versus Act Up
AIDES ready for a boycott
In support of Act Up Paris, AIDES has announced that if Abbott does not withdraw its complaint against the former it will break off any contact with the pharmaceutical company. The latter has just launched a judicial attack against Act Up Paris following the organization’s actions on
The aim of this action was to protest against the company’s decision to cease marketing new medications in
The awarding of a compulsory licence to Kaletra in particular is necessary to enable
Abbott’s decision therefore means denying Thai AIDS sufferers an indispensable medication, with full awareness of the consequences. Beyond
While again calling on Abbott to cease its reprisals against countries employing compulsory licences, AIDES also demands that it terminate legal proceedings against Act Up Paris, which AIDES expresses solidarity with and will continue to back to the hilt.
Abbott ataca Act-Up Paris (2)
Wall Street Journal
Sues AIDS Group
June 18, 2007; Page B1
Breaking what has become a taboo in the pharmaceutical industry's respectful relations with AIDS activists, Abbott Laboratories has sued a French AIDS group for launching a cyber attack against its Web site.
The unusually aggressive legal move comes on top of other controversial measures Abbott has taken, such as quintupling the price of one of its AIDS drugs in the U.S. and scrapping plans to introduce an improved formulation of another AIDS drug in Thailand.
With its lawsuit, filed in a French criminal court on May 23, the company is violating an unwritten practice the drug industry long ago adopted to be conciliatory toward AIDS organizations. Aside from angering the global AIDS community, Abbott's actions have prompted dismay among other drug makers, which have come to see picking fights with AIDS activists as self-defeating and bad public relations.
"Early on, we realized it was important to work with the activist groups," says Justine Frain, vice president of global community partnerships at GlaxoSmithKline PLC, recalling the public-relations headaches AIDS activists caused for the British drug maker with their stunts in the late 1980s, such as when they chained themselves to company buildings. Glaxo's philosophy now is "that community groups are part of the solution," she says.
Abbott, based in Abbott Park, Ill., called its suit against the group Act Up-Paris "a principled action," justified by the fact that the cyber attack interrupted some of its business activities, such as the sale of nutritional products online. Abbott says the activist group violated two articles of the French penal code that prohibit disrupting a Web site and providing the means for someone to do so.
"We respect the right to protest and, while our organizations can disagree on various matters, it is important to convey those disagreements in a respectful, appropriate and lawful manner," Abbott spokesman Scott Stoffel said. The company declined to further explain its public-relations strategy in breaking with the industry norm.
If the court rules against Act Up-Paris, it could fine it as much as €75,000, or $100,000, and order its disbanding.
Act Up-Paris is an offshoot of New York-based Act Up, which stands for AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power. The French Act Up is known for its provocative tactics, such as destroying drug companies' booths at conferences and splattering fake blood on their office buildings. It has sometimes drawn criticism from other AIDS organizations for being too radical.
"We use symbolic violence to call attention to the real violence" brought on patients by pharmaceutical companies' actions, says Jerome Martin, an Act Up-Paris member.
But AIDS activists have rallied around the organization and denounced Abbott's lawsuit as an ugly intimidation tactic. "It's the latest in a long line of miserable actions by Abbott," says Mark Harrington, executive director of the Treatment Action Group, an AIDS advocacy group based in New York.
Abbott began its hardball behavior in late 2003 when it raised the price of its AIDS drug Norvir, which is used in combination with pills from rival companies, by 400% in the U.S. The move was part of a strategy to persuade patients to stop using Norvir and the competitors' drugs and switch to Abbott's new combination pill, Kaletra.
In a page-one article1 last January, The Wall Street Journal revealed that Abbott contemplated even more controversial actions in the months leading up to the price increase. Under one scenario, it considered removing Norvir pills from the U.S. market and selling the medicine only in a liquid formulation that one of its executive admitted tasted like vomit, emails and internal documents showed. To fend off questions from AIDS patients, Abbott discussed using the cover story that it needed Norvir pills for a humanitarian effort in Africa. Abbott says this scenario was considered by executives who weren't decision makers and quickly discarded.
Abbott further riled the AIDS community earlier this year when it withdrew all its pending new drug applications from Thailand after the country announced it would break the company's patent on Kaletra to import or produce cheaper copies of the drug. One of the applications Abbott pulled was for a newer heat-resistant formulation of Kaletra particularly well-suited to Thailand's tropical climate. Activists said the move was unprecedented and likened it to the "nuclear option."
Abbott took a more conciliatory step in April when it said it would work with the World Health Organization to sell Kaletra to many developing nations, including Thailand, below the price of generics. But it refused to reverse its decision to pull its new drug applications from the country. Abbott says it held its stance on the new-drug applications because the Thai government hasn't yet assured it that it respects intellectual property, although discussions continue.
On April 26, Act Up-Paris responded to a call by Thai AIDS patient groups to protest Abbott's actions by organizing an attack on the company's Web site. By clicking on a link posted on Act Up-Paris's own Web site, between 500 and 1,000 activists from France, Canada, the U.S., India and Thailand overloaded Abbott's server. Mr. Martin says the attack lasted a total of four hours and disabled Abbott's site for about 30 minutes on the eve of its annual shareholder meeting. (An Abbott spokesman says the site was disabled for longer than that, but couldn't provide a specific timeframe.) After sending a threatening letter to Act Up-Paris, Abbott filed suit.
Though some of the group's past stances have been criticized by other AIDS organizations, activists have come to its defense, expressing outrage that a drug company would sue protesters. They say the attack against Abbott's Web site was a legitimate mode of protest and Abbott's response is disproportionate.
"You can agree or not with [Act Up-Paris], but there is something called freedom of speech that says you can go to Abbott's headquarters and you can do the same with a Web site," says Joan Tallada, chairman of GTT, a Barcelona-based AIDS organization.
Abbott's aggressive tactics have raised eyebrows in the pharmaceutical industry. "I've spoken to pharmaceutical industry executives who think that Abbott's position on Thailand is a PR disaster for the industry," says Michael Weinstein, president of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, a large provider of medical care to AIDS patients.
Act Up-Paris's Mr. Martin says the group will defend itself in court against the lawsuit but also plans on using the media coverage garnered by the lawsuit to draw attention back to Abbott's actions.
"We're going to use the forum they're offering us to talk about Thailand again and the horrible consequences their decision has had there," he says.
sexta-feira, junho 15, 2007
Stephen Lewis sobre a farça do G8
Remarks delivered by Stephen Lewis, Co-Director of AIDS-Free World at the
RESULTS Educational Fund annual conference, Washington, DC, June 12, 2007*
Let me take a hard look at the issues arising from the G8.
Everyone is aware of the solemn promises that were made at Gleneagles in
July of 2005. They followed in the wake of Tony Blair’s Commission on
Africa, with all of the attendant triumphalism, and it seemed to promise a
new dawn for the African continent. In particular, they promised a
breakthrough in addressing the pandemic of HIV/AIDS.
The two centerpieces of Gleneagles are etched in everyone’s memory: foreign
aid (Official Development Assistance) to Africa would double from $25
billion a year to $50 billion a year by 2010. Equally, by 2010, the G8
pledged to do everything in its power to achieve universal access to
treatment for those who need it.
Bob Geldoff, in one of his more memorable spasms of hyperbole gave the G8
“ten out of ten”.
Some of us never believed Gleneagles for a moment. The fundamental
dishonesty of the pledges came to light just two months later, in September
of 2005, when the G8 countries at a pledging conference for the Global Fund
to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, fell billions short of their
commitments. You have to wonder how western leaders can be so stunningly
cavalier about the lives of millions of people, the great majority of them
Fast forward, then, to 2007 and the G8 Summit just completed in Germany. In
the weeks prior to the Summit itself, quite predictably a number of groups
and institutions took stock of the extent to which the promises at
Gleneagles had been honoured. Every single assessment found a staggering
The first was the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the OECD, one of
the most authoritative vehicle for expert western analysis. It found that,
incredibly enough, Official Development Assistance had actually declined
internationally between 2005 and 2006, and for Africa the verdict was
This finding by the DAC, shocking though it seemed, was given the stamp of
accuracy by the very group that was established by Tony Blair at the time of
Gleneagles to monitor progress. It’s chaired by Kofi Annan, and has a
membership comprising a number of celebrated figures from Michel Camdessus
to Graça Machel to Bob Geldoff himself. They did an analysis of the
aftermath of Gleneagles and came to the same conclusion as that of the OECD.
Geldoff on this occasion used the word “grotesque ‘to describe the behaviour
of the G8.
Then, in addition to those two definitive commentaries, Bono weighed in with
his advocacy group, ‘DATA’ whose findings were every bit as damning as the
It seemed implausible to most of the world (and I deliberately exclude
myself because I’ve put in writing my complete skepticism of the G8
process)--- that after the absolute commitments of Gleneagles, everything
could go so lamentably off course. But one learns, painfully, that the
betrayal of Africa is almost a matter of principle for the G8.
With that in mind, no one should have imagined significant progress in
Germany this year. The good intentions that flowed from President Merkel
were no different in tone and content from those which preceded Gleneagles.
People were willing to give her the benefit of the doubt, in part because of
George Bush’s announcement, just ten days before the Summit, that he would
recommend a doubling of his original PEPFAR pledge, from $15Billion to $30
Billion over the five years from 2009-2013. The pledge was greeted with the
uncritical applause of a compliant media, completely failing to grasp, as
the Global AIDS Alliance immediately pointed out, that PEPFAR had already
reached over $5.4 Billion for 2007, and would probably exceed that sum in
2008. Since that’s the case, it means that the new $30 Billion dollar total,
divided by five years, will amount to a real increase of only several
hundred million each year (if that). Worse, there was no recognition of the
fact that the minimum amount that the President should have announced ---
measured against the United States share of world GDP --- was $50 Billion
over the five year period, and even then, a shortfall would almost certainly
However, the heady use of the deceptive PEPFAR figures (and this is to say
nothing of the continued preposterous ‘abstinence’ clauses, and the
continued underfunding of the Global Fund), seemed to proffer hope that the
G8 would somehow restore its credibility.
Well, we really have our work cut out for us. What actually happened in
Germany is deeply, deeply troubling, and it’s worthy of every piece of scorn
that can be heaped upon it. The G8 communiqué is deficient in so many ways:
fundamentally, it’s intellectually dishonest and riddled with arithmetic
sleight-of-hand. It’s hard to know where to begin, but let me at least take
a crack in five areas.
1. The text says: “A vigorous impetus seems necessary to ensure that Africa
will meet the Millennium Development Goals”. I shudder at this piece of
shameless dishonesty. They have no intention of providing such an impetus:
without it, the G8 well knows that all the statistical evidence shows that
Africa cannot reach the MDGs … that poverty and disease and conflict are too
deeply ingrained to be reversed by 2015. Why go through this abysmal charade
of words without meaning?
2. The text says “Trade is a key engine of growth for Africa.” And except
for some fatuous gobbledegook about how the G8 will help African exports,
the trade section is empty of meaning. Contrast Germany with what was said
at Gleneagles: “An ambitious and balanced conclusion to the DOHA round is
the best way to make trade work for Africa. The Hong Kong Ministerial in
December (2005) will be a critical step towards a successful outcome of DOHA
in 2006. The World Bank estimates that implementing the negotiations could
lift 140 million people out of poverty.”
DOHA has totally disappeared from this year’s G8 communiqué. But the rub is
that it should never have been in Gleneagles. The G8 knew in July of 2005
that DOHA was dead. But they were prepared to toy with the rhetoric of 140
million people to fatten their text. Where Africa is concerned, the G8 is a
consortium of fabrication.
3. After describing the carnage of the pandemic which, they point out, apart
from the suffering is “causing massive impacts on the economic and social
development of the countries concerned”, they make their infamous commitment
of $60 billion “over the coming years”.
Now what in heaven’s name is that supposed to mean? In the inelegant
language of diplomacy gone wrong, those are called “weasel words”. They’re
meant to convey everything and nothing. No group of countries, let alone
countries with the manipulative sophistication of the G8, would use that
language unless they were looking for a way out. Some commentators are
working on the assumption that the language really means the same five years
encompassed by the new PEPFAR initiative. I have a message for the trusting
naiveté which that suggestion reveals: if they meant five years, they would
have said five years.
The promise of Gleneagles was an extra $25 Billion a year by 2010, with
increases every year thereafter, not $60 Billion “over the coming years.”
Worse, most of the $60 Billion isn’t even new money: it encompasses the $30
Billion just announced by George Bush, plus additional Billions already
announced by other G8 countries. To be sure, the original pledge for 2010 is
again repeated, but we already know the worth of those words. According to
UNAIDS, we’ll need $18 Billion this year, $22 Billion next year, $30 billion
by 2010, with the dollar figures rising after that. The shortfall is
astronomic. What in the world will happen to the millions of Africans,
struggling with AIDS, for whom the resources are the difference between life
and death, let alone the millions upon millions of orphans for whom any kind
of life is compromised?
Allow me a juxtaposition. According to all estimates, including those of the
Congressional Research Service of the United States, enhanced by data from
the other troop contributors, the G8 countries are spending at least $120
Billion each year to fight the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The same
countries can’t even guarantee a paltry total of $60 Billion over an unknown
number of years to fight a pandemic that has taken 25 million lives and has
40 million people in its grip. I keep asking, what has happened to the
world’s moral anchor?
4. All of this is crucial, of course, because what hangs in the balance is
universal access to treatment by the year 2010. What is ominously
instructive in this instance is to compare the language of 2005 with that of
In Gleneagles, the text read: “Implement a package for HIV prevention,
treatment and care, with the aim of as close as possible to universal access
to treatment for all those who need it by 2010.” In Germany, the text reads
“The G8 countries will scale up their efforts to contribute towards the goal
of universal access by 2010”.
Two years ago, we were getting ‘as close as possible’ to universal access;
now we’re ‘scaling up our efforts to contribute’ to universal access.
Language is everything. The current language is frighteningly ambiguous. And
it’s not helped by throwing the figure of five million people into the text,
when it has become clear, according to UNAIDS, that the numbers requiring
treatment by 2010 will be significantly higher.
It is simply unconscionable for the G8 to be so recklessly cavalier about
human life. They have it within their grasp to guarantee full universal
access by 2010; if they wanted it to happen, it would happen. They similarly
have it within their capacity to guarantee every penny required by the
Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, but instead they merely
acknowledge the financial targets which the Global Fund has recently set.
In a highly provocative fashion, the G8 is challenging all of us: we,
collectively, have to find a way to force the G8’s hand, to pummel them into
sanity. In the annals of social change, it’s rare that advocacy has
confronted such an adversary.
5. There remains, however, one other aspect of the communiqué that requires
further elaboration. The text offers obligatory obeisance to the
vulnerability of women. And the language is pointed and strong.
But nowhere --- and this is frankly astonishing --- nowhere is there mention
of the prospective international agency for women, actively under discussion
at the United Nations, as a vehicle to make a significant dent on the
pandemic. Why? In the final analysis, probably because it would cost money.
The deliberate omission of the most significant initiative on behalf of
women to emerge in the multilateral system … an initiative proposed with
representation from five of the G8 countries, shows the pro forma quality of
the paragraphs addressing the desperate dilemma of women and girls.
And that reality lies at the heart of what we’re dealing with. For some
inexplicable reason, the G8 is not prepared to provide the resources to
subdue the pandemic in Africa. That leaves all of us as advocates with a
difficult question of strategy.
There’s no use denying that we failed in Germany. At Gleneagles we were left
with the illusion of progress; post-Germany no illusions remain. All of the
concerted eleventh hour lobbying, all of the celebrity pressure at the
highest levels failed to move the G8 to decent and tenable positions. That’s
the simple reality of it.
So what do we do? Well, let me first suggest what we don’t do. We don’t
issue the kind of congratulatory statement that came from UNAIDS in the
immediate wake of the G8 in Germany: “UNAIDS … welcomes G8 leaders
affirmation of their commitment to work towards the goal of universal access
to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support by 2010, and UNAIDS also
applauds --- [applauds!] --- the G8 announcement of a projected $US 60
billion in investment …”. It just doesn’t ring true, and everyone knows it.
It smacks of currying favour, of appeasement, of polishing disappointment
with the anxious gloss of the supplicant. For several years now, I’ve felt
that the UN always overdoes this sort of thing: strewing rose petals in the
path of the donors to keep them happy. It doesn’t work. It has to stop. It’s
based on the mistaken assumption that if you bend over backwards, it will
improve your posture. It’s time to stop posturing.
For all of us, in this grand coalition of civil society, it’s necessary, I
think, to take a much tougher road. And to choose our targets carefully.
There is hope in the offing.
It seems to me that there are five countries we should target. First, Japan,
because they host the next G8 and because they show the possibility of
approximating their financial promises. Second, Germany, because President
Merkel provided twitches of enlightenment, albeit the dollars were
deficient. Third, France, because the appointment of Bernard Kouchner as
Foreign Minister augers well for humanitarian imperatives. Fourth, the
United Kingdom, because Gordon Brown has shown more conscience and
commitment on the issues of poverty, disease and Africa than the rest of the
G8 leadership put together. And finally, the United States, because a
decisive election is coming, and whether or not there is a change in
Administration, there must be a dramatic new impetus in public policy.
That’s why the work of RESULTS is indispensable. You understand the meaning
of the grass-roots and grass-roots communication. You recognize, almost
intuitively, that advocacy is a full-time job … it never ends … and what is
needed is a powerful social movement to provide awareness on the one hand,
and political pressure on the other. Nor should that pressure be directed
solely at the ultimate leader, or the putative Presidential candidates, of
whichever party. We’ve tried that, and we can continue to gnaw at that
particular political bone. But we must also apply pressure at every
political level in every country, building a formidable coalition in the
You have people of tremendous experience to draw upon. You have all of the
Millennium Development Goals to keep you on fire. You have millions of
lives, hanging by a thread, begging for your intervention.
The problem with the G8, it seems to me, is its congenital divorce from
reality. We’re part of an era where human life is devalued. Just look at
Iraq, just look at Darfur, just look at HIV/AIDS. The international
community has lost its bearings. When that happens, the human dimension
slides into obscurity. The grandmother who buries her children, the orphan
who weeps through the night, the women scarred forever by sexual violence,
they recede into the mists of statistical calculation. We dehumanize them,
their faces blurred, their identities lost.
It’s a terrible thing we do to the uprooted and disinherited of the earth.
Together, we must bring it to an end.
*Mr. Lewis is the former United Nations Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in
Africa. AIDS-Free World is a new international AIDS advocacy organization.
Gays continuam sem poder doar sangue
“É uma luta ridícula, por ainda ter de ser feita”, garante Ana Pires, da associação Médicos pela Escolha (MPE). No Dia Mundial do Dador do Sangue, celebrado ontem, a MPE questiona a discriminação latente, dado que não existe qualquer pressuposto científico que justifique a recusa de sangue de cidadãos homossexuais.
Ban Ki-moon sobre utilizadores de drogas
Drug abuse is a problem that can be prevented, treated and controlled. While efforts must be stepped up to reduce supply -- by helping growers of illicit crops find viable licit alternatives, and ensuring that law enforcement agencies continue their good work in seizing drugs -- the greatest challenge in global drug control is reducing demand. With less demand, there would be less need for supply, and fewer incentives for criminals to traffic drugs.
Combating drug abuse is a collective effort. It requires political leadership and sufficient resources -- particularly for more and better treatment facilities. It requires the engagement of parents and teachers, as well as health care and social workers. It requires the media and criminal justice officials to play their part.
All walks of life must join forces and devote special attention to the vulnerable: to those who are vulnerable to taking drugs because of their personal or family situation, and to those who are vulnerable because they take drugs. Our mission is to enable them to take control of their lives, rather than allowing their lives to be controlled by drugs. That means giving young people sound guidance, employment opportunities, and the chance to be involved in activities that help organize life and give it meaning and value. It means supporting parents' efforts to provide love and leadership. It means reaching out to marginalized groups and ensuring they receive the care they need to cope with behavioural, psychological or medical problems. It means providing reasons to hope.
For those who are grappling with addiction, effective treatment is essential. Drug abuse is a disease that must be treated on the basis of evidence, not ideology. I urge Member States to devote more attention to early detection; to do more to prevent the spread of disease -- particularly HIV and hepatitis -- through drug use; to treat all forms of addiction; and to integrate drug treatment into the mainstream of public health and social services.
Drug abuse brings anguish and torment to individuals and their loved ones. It eats away at the fabric of the human being, of the family, of society. It is a subject all of us must take personally. On this International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, let us ensure there is no place for drugs in our lives or our communities.
Coordenador contra exclusão de dadores
O coordenador nacional para a infecção VIH/Sida, Henrique Barros, defendeu esta quinta-feira o fim da exclusão de dadores de sangue com base na orientação sexual, prática que disse não fazer sentido e ser «cientificamente inválida», notícia a agência Lusa.
quinta-feira, junho 14, 2007
Perguntas e resposta da Roche sobre o Viracept
Estimativa de pacientes que estavam a tomar Viracept em Portugal: 800-850 pessoas. Só no Hospital Curry Cabral: mais de 200!
(em comparação, na Inglaterra: 650...)
14.06.07: Pergunta do GAT à Roche
Obrigado por estas informações. Através das vendas pensamos que deve ser possível fazer uma estimativa do número de doentes a tomar Viracept em Portugal. Pode partilhar connosco esta aproximação?
Confirma que os lotes alterados estavam no mercado português desde Março de 2007?
Com os melhores cumprimentos,
14.06.07 Resposta da Roche:
No seguimento do seu e-mail, venho por este meio informá-lo que não é do nosso conhecimento o número de doentes a tomar Viracept em Portugal, na medida em que não temos acesso a essa informação.
Quanto às medidas que os Hospitais e Centros Hospitalares estão a tomar para fazer a recolha do produto, o pedido de informação deverá ser remetido para os mesmos. No entanto, junto envio cópia da documentação por nós enviada para os Profissionais de Saúde e Serviços Farmacêuticos dos hospitais, assim como cópia de toda a informação disponibilizada, até ao momento, no site do INFARMED relativamente à recolha do Viracept do mercado.
Finalmente, informamos que a Roche está a recolher do mercado todos os lotes de Viracept 250 mg, comprimidos revestidos por película e Viracept, 50 mg/g pó oral que se encontrem dentro do prazo de validade, independentemente da data de colocação no mercado."
Disponibilizando-me para quaisquer eventuais questões que lhe surjam, despeço-me com os meus melhores cumprimentos,
07.06.07 Pergunta do GAT à Roche:
Gostaríamos de saber quantos doentes estão a fazer terapêuticas com nelfinavir em Portugal e quais as medidas que os centros hospitalares hospitais estão a tomar. Obrigado!
Confirma que os lotes alterados estavam no mercado português desde Março de 2007?
Com os melhores cumprimentos,
RedLA+ sobre a recolha do Viracept
REDLA+ RED LATINOAMERICANA DE
PERSONAS VIVIENDO CON VIH
PRONUNCIAMIENTO ANTE EL RETIRO DEL ANTIRRETROVIRAL VIRACEPT POR ROCHE
Red Latinoamericana de Personas Viviendo con VIH/
2.- Esta grave situación detectada en el antirretroviral VIRACEPT® afecta directamente en la calidad de vida de las personas que viven con VIH/Sida, ya que la mencionada sustancia al ser mutagénico, podría afectar los genes de los seres humanos y producir cáncer, lo que está generando temor, angustia en las personas, dado por el impacto negativo en el aspecto de salud y psicológica que produce una noticia como la antes citada, aunado a la incertidumbre de carecer de información adecuada y efectiva en las personas usuarias del antirretroviral VIRACEPT®, especialmente a un número considerable de NIÑOS, NIÑAS, ADOLESCENTES, JÓVENES, ADULTOS Y EMBARAZADAS que actualmente ingieren este antirretroviral.
3.- En el comunicado de ROCHE no informa cuáles son los lotes afectados del antirretroviral VIRACEPT®, ni tampoco determina la ubicación de los lotes afectados.
4.- Un número importante de personas que viven con VIH/SIDA que ingieren el antirretroviral VIRACEPT® de los países de Latinoamérica y El Caribe informan no recibir información ni orientación adecuada y oportuna sobre qué hacer ante tal situación.
6.- Toda empresa o laboratorio productor de medicamentos para el consumo humano tiene la obligación de garantizar la más alta calidad, seguridad y eficacia de sus productos para evitar la afectación de las vidas
Es por ello, que públicamente REDLA+ RED LATINOAMERICANA DE PERSONAS VIVIENDO CON VIH
REPUDIA Y CONDENA:
AL LABORATORIO FARMACÉUTICO ROCHE por producir de forma irresponsable y anti-ética medicamentos antirretrovirales como el VIRACEPT® de 250 mg con calidad no demostrada
A) A LOS ESTADOS, GOBIERNOS Y PROGRAMAS NACIONALES DE VIH/SIDA DE LATINOAMÉRICA Y EL CARIBE garanticen los derechos ciudadanos como son la vida y la salud de las personas que viven con VIH/SIDA y se declaren en ESTADO DE EMERGENCIA, a fin de que ofrezcan respuestas rápidas y efectivas para que se garantice el acceso a tratamientos antirretrovirales con la más alta calidad, seguridad y eficacia a las personas que viven con VIH/SIDA, especialmente a los NIÑOS, NIÑAS, ADOLESCENTES, JÓVENES, EMBARAZADAS Y ADULTOS QUE VIVEN CON VIH/SIDA; y se fortalezcan los sistemas nacionales de vigilancia farmacológica. Igualmente inicien averiguaciones legales para determinar las responsabilidades por los posibles daños causados a la salud física y mental como la moral de las personas que viven con VIH/
C) AL LABORATORIO FARMACÉUTICO ROCHE que cumplan fielmente con las buenas practicas de manufactura exigidas por las normas internacionales; que determinen los lotes afectados por la sustancia química llamada estér etílico del ácido metanosulfónico e identifiquen la ubicación de los mismos, y asuman públicamente su responsabilidad en producir de forma URGENTE nuevos lotes del medicamento antirretroviral VIRACEPT® a fin de poder responder a las demandas y exigencias de las personas que viven con VIH/SIDA de Latinoamérica y el Caribe.
D) AL GREMIO MEDICO Y DEMÁS PERSONAL DE SALUD que ofrezcan recomendaciones y orientaciones adecuadas y oportunas a las personas que viven con VIH/
A LAS REDES Y ASOCIACIONES DE PERSONAS QUE VIVEN CON VIH/SIDA Y AL RESTO DEL SECTOR COMUNITARIO DE LATINOAMÉRICA Y EL CARIBE:
a) Vigilar las actuaciones de los organismos e instituciones antes mencionadas, especialmente la que corresponde a los Estados, gobiernos, Programas Nacionales de VIH/SIDA y del LABORATORIO FARMACÉUTICO ROCHE.
b) Exigir se garantice el acceso a tratamientos antirretrovirales con la más alta calidad demostrada, de acuerdo a lo expresado en la Declaración de Compromisos en la Lucha contra el VIH/SIDA, Metas del Milenio, pactos, acuerdos y tratados internacionales suscritos por los Estados y gobiernos de Latinoamérica y el Caribe.
c) Denunciar públicamente ante los organismos competentes cualquier situación que amenace o ponga en peligro las vidas
REDLA+ RED LATINOAMERICANA DE PERSONAS VIVIENDO CON VIH/SIDA ofrece su apoyo incondicional, se solidariza con las niñas, niños, adolescentes, jóvenes, mujeres y hombres que viven con VIH/SIDA y sin ningún tipo de distinción afectados/as por el medicamento antirretroviral VIRACEPT® producido por el LABORATORIO FARMACÉUTICO ROCHE y exige se garantice nuestro derecho a la vida y la salud, el cual se ve profundamente vulnerado ante este hecho inexplicable.
RED LATINOAMÉRICA DE PERSONAS VIVIENDO CON VIH/SIDA REDLA+