HEALTH - FUND ALLOCATES B5.72BN TO GOVT'S WAR ON DEADLY
By Anjira Assavanonda
Thailand will receive US$133 million (5.72 billion baht) from
the Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM)
to run a five-year programme for prevention and treatment
of the deadly diseases.
The money has been approved for Thailand's projects planned
for 2002-2006, said Public Health Minister Sudarat Keyuraphan.
of the money would fund anti-retroviral treatment for HIV/Aids
patients, she said. The fund was approved at the second meeting
of its management board in New York during April 22-24, she
fund was initiated in 2000 at the meeting of G8 countries
in Okinawa, Japan, in order to provide financial support for
prevention, control and treatment of HIV/Aids, tuberculosis
and malaria which have been major causes of death among the
poor in developing countries.
by United Nations secretary-general Kofi Annan, the fund was
established in January with contributions amounting to more
than US$ 1.9 billion from rich countries.
"Given the country's success in controlling the three diseases,
Thailand has been invited to be a co-founder of the fund with
support from other Southeast Asian countries," Ms Sudarat
Wibulpolprasert, a deputy permanent secretary for health,
has been made Thailand's representative to the 18-member fund
management board, she added.
new body, called the Country Co-ordinated Mechanism (CCM),
has been set up to process Thailand's projects.
by Deputy Health Minister Surapong Suebwonglee, it comprises
officials from international organisations, and the public
and private sectors.
Dr Surapong said the GFATM board has already approved funding
for the first two years of Thailand's five-year projects.
The GFATM board would assesss the outcome of the projects
in the first two years before granting the rest of the money,
the first two years, Thailand would receive US$31 million
for Aids, $7 million for tuberculosis, and $5 million for
malaria, or a total of 1,850 million baht," he said.
would also work with Burma to propose a bilateral project
to control the spread of the three diseases along common border
areas, according to Dr Surapong.
Thainua, head of the Communicable Diseases Control Department,
said the projects would emphasise prevention of sexually transmitted
diseases, anti-retroviral treatment for Aids patients, special
treatment for tuberculosis patients, and prevention of resistance
to malaria drugs.