WHO misses half-year target for antiretroviral program
A report released Sunday by the World Health Organization shows that the agency missed its half-year target for its 3 x 5 program, which aims to provide antiretroviral drugs to 3 million AIDS patients in developing nations by 2005, The Wall Street Journal reports. WHO aimed to treat 500,000 people at the six-month mark of the program, but had provided antiretrovirals to only about 440,000--60,000 short of its goal. The report also acknowledges that several key objectives for the first six months of the program also have not been met, including deploying about 200 health workers to developing countries; fewer than 60 have been reassigned. The report says the main reason the program's goals haven't been met is a higher-than-expected price for antiretroviral drugs. WHO expected to pay between $100 and $300 per person for generic anti-HIV drugs by the end of June, but the current average price for generic antiretrovirals is $484, according to the report.