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MDG6: AIDS and the Moral Economy of International Health Policy

Year: 2013
Working paper number: 325
Author: Nattrass, Nicoli
Unit: ASRU
MDG 6, 'to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases', is unique among the MDGs because it emerged in the context of unprecedented prior international mobilisation, especially around HIV/AIDS, thus both reflecting and facilitating an expanding international health agenda. MDG 6 built on the idea of 'health as development', originally articulated at the 1978 conference on primary health at Alma-Ata, but was profoundly shaped by the political traction and fund-raising successes of AIDS activism and the international AIDS response. This underpinned the expansion of MDG 6 targets to include antiretroviral treatment (ART), helped forge partnerships to reduce the prices of ART and essential medicine, thereby contributing to MDG 8 ('building partnerships for development') and, in high HIV-prevalence regions, also to MDGs 4 and 5 (maternal and child health). The moral-economic dimensions of the international AIDS response point to the importance of civil society mobilisation in shaping the AIDS and international health agendas. Continued support for civil society organisations is necessary for continued progress on global health.
Publication file: WP 325.pdf