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A pandemic is not just a disease – it’s a crisis fuelled by inequality | Mia Malan

Getting scientists to develop a medicine is a relatively small part of the solution to a pandemic. The more difficult thing is to get the medicine to the people who need it

If you were a South African health journalist during the late 1990s and early 2000s, you were mostly an Aids reporter. Eight out of 10 stories you produced were about the epidemic. It was a time of unprecedented Aids-related deaths, government policy based on politics rather than science, and activism that, in many respects, was as fierce as the fight against apartheid.

I was a cub reporter, with limited insight, for the public broadcaster.Following HIV during a controversial time when the government refused to provide antiretroviral drugs to people infected with the virus, quickly taught me an important thing – a pandemic isn’t simply a disease gone viral. It’s a political, social, economic and human rights crisis, because the germ that causes the outbreak travels through a society ravaged by inequality.

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Read the original article at The Guardian

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