Monthly Archives: March 2011

SECTION27 to host regional activist dialogue on Right to Health

SECTION27 to host groundbreaking Southern African Regional Activist Dialogue on Strengthening Campaigns for the Right to Health and why we need a UN Framework Convention on the Right to Health.

This year a million people will die of HIV in Eastern and Southern Africa. Hundreds of thousands more will die of easily preventable diseases. Infant and maternal mortality remains intolerably high across the region. This situation demands an enhanced and urgent response to health, yet health systems are under enormous strain, many governments are lukewarm in their response to health and international donor assistance is flagging or going into reverse, particularly the commitment to fund universal access to HIV treatment.

Submission on the proposed methodology for international benchmarking of medicine prices

The proposed Methodology for International Benchmarking of Prices of Medicines and Scheduled Substances in South Africa seeks to introduce an addition to the state’s regulatory tools used to ensure that medicines are appropriately priced in South Africa. As a public interest law centre that seeks to influence, develop and use the law to protect, promote and advance human rights, SECTION27 welcomes the publication of the proposed methodology and this opportunity to make further submissions to the Department of Health (DoH).

Proposed EU economic partnership raises concerns about medicines access

After stalling for some time, negotiations for an economic partnership agreement (EPA) between the European Union (EU) on the one hand and the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), Mozambique and Angola on the other have recently restarted. According to an article published in Business Day on 10 February 2011, Xavier Carim – Deputy Director-General for international trade at the Department of Trade and Industry – is reported to have indicated that the EPA “should strike a balance between the levels of market access, regional harmonisation of rules, customs co-operation and safety, enforcement of intellectual property laws, competition, investment and procurement.”

5th BEMF meeting to take place on 1 April 2011

The fifth Budget and Expenditure Monitoring Forum (BEMF) will take place on Friday, 1 April 2011 from 10:00 to 14:00 at the SECTION27 offices in Braamfontein, Johannesburg. The BEMF draws together individuals and organisations from civil society to focus attention on the state’s health budgeting and expenditure.

A bold, courageous move on HIV testing

The following opinion piece by SECTION27 Senior Researcher Jonathan Berger was published on Health-e and in The Star on 11 March 2011.
For too long the debate about HIV testing and human rights has largely focused on the implications of the former for the latter: how testing has the potential to undermine rights. Given the experiences of many people living with HIV, this is understandable: many have lost – or been denied – jobs; insurance policies have been denied routinely; access to health care services has often been limited.