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Last Updated: Thursday, 30 November 2006, 12:37 GMT
Clinton launches child HIV drugs
Bill Clinton (centre) meets a HIV-positive child in Delhi
Bill Clinton met some of India's child sufferers of HIV/Aids

A foundation headed by Bill Clinton has negotiated a deal to make HIV/Aids treatment cheaper for children, the former US president has announced.

Mr Clinton outlined the deal in a speech at a children's hospital in the Indian capital, Delhi.

Under the deal, two Indian companies will supply 19 antiretroviral drugs and their cost will be reduced by 45%, a statement by the foundation says.

More than 40m people worldwide are infected with HIV/Aids, the UN says.

The cheap drugs, according to the statement, will be available in 62 developing countries in Africa, Asia, Latin American and the Caribbean.

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I highly appreciate the efforts made by Bill Clinton and also Bill Gate to tackle the HIV/Aids epidemic
Sunita Mishra

One of the drugs, made by leading Indian pharmaceutical companies, Cipla and Ranbaxy, is described as a "new child-friendly product" and will cost less than $60 per year per child.

The international drug-buying facility, Unitaid, set up by France, Brazil, Chile, Norway and the UK, is subsidising the programme by $35m, the Clinton Foundation says.

'Left behind'

"Though the world has made progress in expanding HIV/Aids treatment to adults, children have been left behind. Only one in 10 children who needs treatment is getting it," Mr Clinton said in his speech at the Delhi hospital.

He was there to launch the federal government's national programme to treat children with HIV.

The programme aims to increase the number of children on treatment in India from less than 2,000 in September to 10,000 by the end of March by making paediatric care available at all centres treating adults, the statement by the foundation says.

More than five million Indians are infected with HIV and the UN says India now has more people with the virus than any other country in the world.

The Clinton Foundation, set up in 2002, aims to provide technical and financial help to poorer countries struggling to stop the spread of HIV/Aids.




SEE ALSO
'Hopes high' for HIV conference
11 Aug 06 |  Health
Clinton announces Aids drugs deal
13 Jan 06 |  Americas
Clinton lauds India Aids campaign
26 May 05 |  South Asia

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