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South Africa To Become First PEPFAR Country To 'Nationalize' AIDS Program

“U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said during a visit to South Africa that Pretoria will begin taking more of the responsibilities for its HIV/AIDS program, part of a broader effort to overhaul the U.S. global plan for AIDS relief launched under former President George W. Bush,” Reuters reports. “On Wednesday, Clinton is expected to sign a deal to rework South Africa’s programs under [PEPFAR], allowing the government to better use the funding in its fight against the virus,” the news service writes.

“U.S. officials said South Africa will be the first PEPFAR country to begin to ‘nationalize’ its program, but others would be expected to follow as their capacities increase and the United States seeks to more effectively target its overseas assistance in an atmosphere of budget austerity at home,” according to Reuters. “The United States has spent $3.2 billion since 2004 on anti-AIDS programs in South Africa, where 5.7 million people are infected — or close to 18 percent of the adult population,” the news service notes (Govender/Quinn/Herskovitz, 8/7).