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Shattered Dreams?An Oral History of the South African AIDS Epidemic$
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Gerald M. Oppenheimer and Ronald Bayer

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195307306

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195307306.001.0001

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New Beginnings?

New Beginnings?

(p.199) 6 New Beginnings?
Shattered Dreams?

Gerald M. Oppenheimer

Ronald Bayer

Oxford University Press

In the fall of 2003, capitulating to both domestic and international pressure, a new plan was agreed upon that would ultimately provide treatment to AIDS patients, this was followed by inertia in implementing it. This chapter captures the response of those whose hospitals and clinics were chosen for the first phase of the roll-out, and who were finally given opportunity to provide life-saving medication to their patients. The chapter recounts the reaction of nurses and doctors who worked in settings that were not selected, whose patients would therefore continue to suffer and die. Finally, the doctors and nurses interviewed speak to the impact of AIDS on their own lives. They discuss their understanding of what it means to be a health care provider in a country whose very social fabric is threatened by an epidemic, and how their experiences with AIDS have shaped their own hopes for a post apartheid South Africa.

Keywords:   HIV/AIDS, epidemic, antiretroviral treatment, roll-out, treatment action campaign, treatment inertia, rationing, drug compliance, post-apartheid South Africa

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