AID FOR AIDS Issues Urgent Call for Recycled HIV Medicine
In conjunction with the Latino Commission on AIDS, AID FOR AIDS (AFA), the HIV medication recycling organization, has issued an “urgent” call for donations of unused, unexpired antiretroviral HIV medicines to be redistributed to people living in the developing world who lack access to treatment.
Founded in 1996, AFA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides free anti-retroviral medication to people with HIV around the world who lack access to treatment, promotes policy reform and capacity building, and offers preventive education and training, all in order to improve quality of life and reduce the stigma and discrimination that adhere to HIV.
AFA’s process begins with collecting donations of unused, unexpired HIV medicines from people with HIV, HIV organizations, medical centers, clinics, healthcare providers, and pharmacies. Next, they gather, sort, and store unused, unexpired medicines including antiretrovirals and other medicines that may benefit people with HIV (e.g., antifungals/antimycotics, antibiotics, treatments for respiratory conditions, diabetes, elevated cholesterol, Hepatitis C, and other comorbidities). AFA currently supplies antiretroviral treatment to more than 550 people with HIV (mainly in Latin America and the Caribbean) who have no other access to treatment. All donated medicines are sent directly to people with HIV and/or their healthcare providers in their countries. AFA has ongoing relationships with both doctors and people with HIV in order to ensure proper use and continuity of care. To date, AFA has provided antiretroviral treatment to over 20,000 people in fifty-nine countries through the Access to Treatment Program.
Just as it has disrupted nearly every other aspect of our lives, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected AFA’s Medicine Drop-off procedures, but they are working to ensure the continuity of their Medicine Recycling Program. Donated HIV antiretroviral and other medicines are being collected at AFA’s main office at 131 Varick Street, Suite 1006. New York, NY 10013. If you live outside the New York City area, AFA can arrange for FedEx pre-paid labels when shipping expenses cannot be met.
—Reporting by Hank Trout
Hank Trout, Senior Editor, edited Drummer, Malebox, and Folsom magazines in the early 1980s. A long-term survivor of HIV/AIDS (diagnosed in 1989), he is a forty-year resident of San Francisco, where he lives with his husband Rick Greathouse. Follow him on Twitter @HankTroutWriter.