New money released for anti-AIDS drugs

People living with HIV/AIDS in Uganda are set to benefit from a new US $70.4 million Global AIDS Fund grant, a local newspaper, The Monitor, reported on Monday.

The release of the money follows recent talks in Thailand, where the Fund announced the approval of grants totalling US $623 million to tackle HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in developing countries.

As the biggest beneficiary of the Fund's third round of grants for 2003, the country was expected to use the money to strengthen existing HIV/AIDS treatment programmes.

It is estimated that just 10 percent of the 150,000 Ugandans currently living with HIV/AIDS have access to antiretroviral therapy.

The Ministry of Health welcomed the new money and confirmed that it would be used for the purchase of anti-AIDS drugs over a three-year period.