Saturday, June 23, 2012

Vatican calls for AIDS medicine to be free

Catholic News Agency
Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone.
.- At the 8th International AIDS Conference in Rome, the Vatican urged that medicines used to treat afflicted patients in Africa be provided free of charge.
“Let us ensure that AIDS sufferers are given prompt, free and effective treatment. Access to treatment should be universal. Let us do this beginning with mothers and children,” Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, said June 22.
“Here, in the name of the Holy Father, I speak for so many suffering voices, for so many sick people who have no voice: let us not waste time, but invest in the necessary resources.”
The conference, organized by the Sant’Egidio Community, was attended by officials from around 20 governments under the slogan of “Long live mothers and children.”
“We can no longer tolerate the death of so many mothers,” said the Cardinal to delegates, “we cannot think of thousands of children as a lost generation. Nothing is lost; Africa has sufficient resources; it is the continent of hope.”
Friday's gathering marked the 10th anniversary of the Sant’Egidio Community’s DREAM program – Drug Resource Enhancement against AIDS and Malnutrition – which now operates in 10 African countries.
It aims to provide retroviral drugs to mothers who are pregnant or breast-feeding. Results seem to suggest that such treatment reduces the HIV/AIDS infection rate among their babies to 3 percent. Meanwhile over 90 percent of adults treated by DREAM are able to resume working and thus support their families.
“The more the infection spreads among women, who are the mainstay of families and communities, the greater the risk of social breakdown in many countries,” explained Cardinal Bertone, “The sickness of women, of children, of men, becomes the sickness of a whole society.”
He concluded by assuring delegates that “Pope Benedict XVI with the Church loves all of Africa” and that “we are committed with you in this fight for life.”
“We know that AIDS is not a fatal destiny for humanity. Altogether, with the help of God, we have the ability and strength to fight it. We have the duty to promote with renewed enthusiasm the gift of life. Thank you.”


  1. And who, pray tell, is to pay for this "free" care? Shall we pay for all other STDs as well?

    Here's an idea: sell all of the enormous wealth the Vatican holds and use that to pay for it. No? Well, how about just keeping such thoughts to yourself, Cardinal Blowhard?

  2. Makes much more sense than paying for free contraceptives, abortifacients, and sterilizations, which would cost much more than AIDS medicine, and would be helping people who are actually sick, not people who are trying to disrupt their own healthy reproductive systems.

    1. So socialized medicine is OK as long as the Catholic Church calls the shots, is that it? Sorry, but it doesn't work that way. You can't have it both ways.

      I'd like someone to pay for my wife's diabetes medicine and my dying sister's treatment for her failing kidneys. Why should the Vatican single out AIDS? Why not have free medical care across the board?

      If you want socialized medicine then you're going to have to pay for things you don't like so get over it. Until the RCC sets up another Holy Roman Empire in the United States (God forbid) then you're going to have to accept the fact that you are living in a secular society.

  3. It makes absolutely no sense, Mary, to be against condoms that can prevent AIDS, but be in favor of "free" AIDS medicine!!

  4. Abstinence prevents AIDS. Not condoms. Condoms give a false sense of security. Abstinence is 100% effective.

  5. Of course abstinence prevents AIDS, but that's not very realistic, is it? Condoms HELP to prevent AIDS in the absence of abstinence. Let's not play games, huh? It is always better to prevent a disease than to provide medicine for it. If we were talking about you or a loved one, I'll bet you would see that!

  6. First of all, I did not understand the article to mean that the government was to pay for the aids medicine, but the Church. Also, people are not animals, they really can be faithful to their spouses. Research Mother Teresa's work and you will find proof of that. You may want to read about AIDS transmission through condoms before you lie to people and tell them they prevent AIDS. Besides the well-known fact that condoms break, the AIDS virus is much smaller even than sperm, and can pass through a condom.

  7. You may want to research the definition of the word abstinence. It doesn't have to do with being faithful to your spouse.

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