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Factsheet: Health budgeting and HIV

SECTION27 has developed a fact sheet on health budgeting and HIV for the members of the Budget and Expenditure Monitoring Forum. This fact sheet explains how the national and provincial governments develop budgets, equitable share and conditional grants.

It is important for civil society to demand that government spend money appropriately, efficiently and in ways that prioritise providing services that will save people’s lives. To do so, we must understand how the budgeting process works and how we can participate in it. It is with this in mind that this fact sheet was developed. We hope it will help people understand the budgeting process.

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SECTION27 wins right to use its own name

Following the initiation of legal proceedings, on 7 May 2010, the Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPRO) has agreed to permit the AIDS Law Project (ALP) to reserve the name SECTION27, incorporating the AIDS Law Project.

CIPRO initially refused to reserve the name, SECTION27, incorporating the AIDS Law Project, explaining as follows, “your proposed name connote government patronage. The wording employed to serve as a name, cannot be allowed and are calculated to cause damage, moreover misleading and damaging”. CIPRO also refused our request on the basis of a comparison with existing names on its database, however, they bore no resemblance to the requested name.

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Introducing SECTION27, an organisation that will challenge the state and the private sector to fulfill their constitutional obligations on health

At 4pm on 7 May 2010, leaders from various civil society,public and private sector organisations in South Africa and internationally, gathered for the launch of a new human rights organisation – SECTION27. Head of Legal and Litigation at SECTION27 Adilla Hassim, delivered a speech and COSATU Secretary General Zwelinzima Vavi delivered the keynote address.

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Constitution packs a real punch:opinion piece published in the Mail and Guardian

Fourteen years ago, our freely elected representatives adopted the Constitution – in part – to “free the potential of each person”, “[h]eal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights”.

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Messages from our partners on the launch of SECTION27

On the eve of the launch of SECTION27, we received messages from the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and UNAIDS and other partners.

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ALP final review: January 2009 – March 2010

The ALP’s final review covers the organisation’s work from January 2009 through March 2010. While focusing on recent work, this review also reflects on experiences and developments over the past 17 years as it considers the transition to SECTION27.

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Submission on the Social Assistance Amendment Bill, 2010

On 20 April 2010, the ALP presented its submission on the Social Assistance Amendment Bill, to the National Assembly Portfolio Committee on Social Development. We focused on two issues, namely, the vagueness of the proposed definition of disability and problems in the current and proposed Appeal Processes. ALP was requested to recommend a definition of disability that addresses the concerns raised in our oral and written submissions and a supplementary submission was made.

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ALP calls on Health Minister to maintain his firm stand on drug prices

The AIDS Law Project (ALP) welcomes the Minister of Health’s budget speech of 13th April 2010. We are encouraged by his commitment to strengthen the public health system, the setting of clear targets for HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment and the urgency in the Minister’s approach to tackling the health crisis in South Africa.

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Equal Education v Western Cape Education Department

On 12 March 2010, the ALP assisted Equal Education in submitting a request to the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) under the Promotion of Access to Information Act. The request sought information on the literacy and numeracy pass rates and average test scores for grades 3 and 6 in the Western Cape.

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Submission on the Division of Revenue Bill, 2010

The AIDS Law Project (ALP) welcomes the opportunity to make this submission on the Division of Revenue Bill, 2010 (DORB)1 to the Select Committee on Appropriations (“the Committee”). Importantly, this is being done for the first time in terms of the Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Act, 2009 (“the Money Bills Act”), which came into force on 16 April 2009. This submission is endorsed by the Public Service Accountability Monitor, the Treatment Action Campaign and the Rural Health Advocacy Project.

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The ALP welcomes aspects of the 2010/2011 budget

The AIDS Law Project (ALP) welcomes those aspects of the 2010/2011 budget that deal with health tabled by Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan on 17 February 2010.

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Rural Health in Focus: Making expenditure control, equity and efficiency work for Rural Health

This is the first issue of Rural Health in Focus, which aims to draw systematic attention to the successes and challenges of rural health in order to improve national health outcomes. This issue focuses specifically on rural health financing, efficiency and equity. To fully appreciate the support rural health care needs in order to meet national goals, we invite the President, the Minister and Deputy Minister of Finance, the Minister and Deputy Minister of Health, as well as the other Finance MinMec and Members of the National Health Council to shadow a rural doctor for a full day.

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BEMF 2nd meeting: The treatment guidelines and the ARV tender – 5 February 2010

BEMF 2nd meeting: The treatment guidelines and the ARV tender – 5 February 2010.
Presentations:

  • Introductory Notes – Nathan Geffen
  • The New Treatment Guidelines – Francois Venter
  • Procuring High Quality ARVs at Internationally Competitive Prices – Vishal Brinjlal
  • Legislative Framework for Procurement – Jonathan Berger

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China Report

Assessment and Observations Arising from a Visit to Beijing and Chengdu, China, to look at Human Rights, Civil Society and aspects of the Chinese Government’s Response to HIV/AIDS.

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Death by Delay: The moratorium on ARV initiation at Edendale Hospital

In 2009 the AIDS Law Project investigated a moratorium on initiating new patients onto ARV treatment at Edendale Hospital in Kwazulu-Natal following press reports from Health-e news and others, and a call from a concerned private practitioner in Pietermaritzburg.We now publish the report of that investigation.

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Press Release: AIDS Law Project calls for accuracy in reporting on Bishop Verryn

The AIDS Law Project (ALP) is concerned about irresponsible and inaccurate reporting that has taken place around the suspension of Bishop Paul Verryn as the Superintendent Minister of the Central Methodist Mission (CMM). Media reports have misleadingly suggested that the disciplinary charges are related to allegations of sexual abuse at the CMM.

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Curator Appointed for Unaccompanied Children at the Central Methodist Church

Today the AIDS Law Project, represented on a pro bono basis by Bowman Gilfillan Attorneys, was admitted as a party in the application for the appointment of Dr Ann Skelton as a curator ad litem to represent the interests of unaccompanied children living at the Central Methodist Church in Johannesburg. A curator ad litem is appointed by the Court to legally represent people where they are unable to represent themselves.

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Statement on resolving the refugee crisis at the Central Methodist Church, Johannesburg

Statement on resolving the refugee crisis at the Central Methodist Church, Johannesburg.
The following organizations would like to express our grave concerns regarding the humanitarian crisis that faces homeless people, particularly Zimbabwean migrants, who are seeking shelter at the Central Methodist Church (CMC) in downtown Johannesburg.

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Justice and the Treatment Action Campaign by Mark Heywood

It is a terrible irony that the need for an effective and ongoing response to the AIDS epidemic will be one of the defining legacies left to the ANC by a President who tried to deny the existence of HIV. It is also ironic that the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), an organization that Mbeki once branded as ‘flag carrier for pharmaceutical companies’, is heralded one of the few organizations that was able to force a complete overturn policy in an area defined and defended by himself, during his Presidency.

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Central Methodist Church vs City of Johannesburg (Loitering Case)

Documents related to the Central Methodist Church vs City of Johannesburg (Loitering Case)

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Green Paper on National Strategic Planning

In response to a call for input on the Green Paper: National Strategic Planning, the ALP recently made a submission to the Presidency and Parliament’s Ad Hoc Committee on the Green Paper on National Strategic Planning. The ALP’s interest in making this submission stems from its commitment to defend and enforce human rights and to ensure that the state discharges its constitutional obligations in accordance with its democratic mandate and the rule of law.

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BEMF Inaugural meeting: 21 August 2009

BEMF Inaugural meeting: 21 August 2009
Presentations by:

  • Legal Implications of Failures in in Health Budgeting – Adila Hassim
  • Case Study: Budget Irregularities and Shortfalls in the Free State – Brian Honermann
  • Long Term Costs and Implications for Sustainable Budgeting – Susan Cleary
  • The Budget Process & Power Brokers: How to Influence It/Them – Alison Hickey Tshangana
  • National AIDS Spending Assessments – Nhlanhla Ndlovu
  • Tools for Community Monitoring of Budgets and Expenditures – Nhlanhla Ndlovu

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Budget and Expenditure Monitoring Forum

The Budget and Expenditure Monitoring Forum (BEMF) is a group of civil society organisations that monitors the National Strategic Plan on HIV and AIDS 2007-2011 (better known as the NSP).

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Letter to Ministers of Health, Social Development, Economic Development and Labour on Community Care Givers

A copy of the letter to the Ministers.

We apologize for not including the Letter to the Ministers dated 29 June 2009 on Decent work and conditions for community health and care workers – please see the link at the end of the press statement.

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Lack of oversight has led to a health emergency

Business Day, 9 February 2009
LAST November, a roadmap for health reform was finalised by a range of stakeholders in the field of health care, including the government. The purpose of the roadmap, which was developed under the auspices of the Development Bank of Southern Africa, is to provide guidance to the next government on priorities for health reform. It reflects a rare consensus regarding the achievements and failures of the health system, as well as new priorities.

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ALP 18-Month Review: July 2007 to December 2008

In July 2007, at the time of the publication of its last 18-month review, the ALP was still in its infancy. It had just re-fashioned itself as an independent not-for-profit organisation, having separated itself from the University of the Witwatersrand, moved offices, registered as a law clinic, complied with a range of corporate law requirements, appointed a Board of Directors, and commenced upon a new organisational life whilst pursuing essentially the same mission.

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Civil Society and Uncivil Government – The Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) versus Thabo Mbeki, 1998- 2008

This chapter examines the experience of one of South Africa‟s foremost pro-poor civil society movements, the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), and uses it to reflect on the role that was played by social justice organisations during Mbeki‟s presidency (1999-2008).

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Naude v The member of the Executive Council, Department of Health, Mpumalanga

On 21 October 2008 the Labour Court handed down the judgment in the case, Naude v The member of the Executive Council, Department of Health, Mpumalanga. The court found that Naude had been unfairly dismissed, awarded him R100 000 compensation, and costs in ALP’s favour.

This is a victory for all doctors who seek to practice their professional ethically, even where it may go against government policy.

In this case the AIDS denialism of the former Minister for Health, Manto Tshabalala-Msimang and the former MEC for Health in Mpumalanga, Sibongile Manana has once again been found to be unlawful and a violation of rights.

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