The Department of Health is anxiously waiting to see if the US Congress approves President Donald Trump’s proposed cuts to global health programmes, as its decision could reduce donor support for HIV/AIDS in SA. The US is the world’s biggest contributor to the global fight against HIV/AIDS and in 2016 contributed $4.9bn through bilateral programmes and international efforts such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Trump’s proposed 2018 budget would shave almost $1bn off this figure, including a $222m cut to its contribution to the Global Fund. "We should all be concerned," said the department’s deputy director-general for HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and maternal and child health, Yogan Pillay. SA has the world’s biggest HIV/AIDS burden, with more than 7-million people living with the disease. Unlike many other countries in sub-Saharan Africa, SA funds the lion’s share of its HIV/AIDS programmes itself. Nevertheless, the s...

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