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Bonino Emma, Tessari Alessandro, Cicciomessere Roberto - 8 novembre 1990
AIDS: Interrogation to the Minister of Health

To the Hon. Minister of Health

The undersigned deputies Bonino, Tessari, Cicciomessere


that only two anti-virus therapies are currently available in Italy to fight HIV infection :

ZODIVUDINA - marketed under the brand name Retrovir, produced by the THE WELLCOME FOUNDATION LTD - London, and distributed by Wellcome Italian S.p.A. - Pomezia.

VIDEX-ddI - Dideoxyinosine, distributed by the Bristol Myers Squibb Company - New York.

That Zidovudina has been systematically distributed for years in hospitals where AIDS patients are treated;

that, instead, ddI has only recently been introduced in Italy;

that many patients suffering from AIDS or correlated syndromes are no longer in the conditions to take zidovudina because they cannot further endure the secondary effects or because the therapy no longer brings its positive effects of inhibiting the replication of the virus;

that in these cases the only available alternative therapy in Italy is the administration of ddI;

that, in contrast to every principle of human right and sympathy with the sufferers, the insufficient quantities of ddI made available by the Bristol-Myers Squibb Company have been entirely destined to clinical experimentation by order or the Ministry of Health;

that such clinical experimentation excludes persons who have undergone zidovudina treatment for a period longer than 15 months, and that this means in practice excluding the patients who most need ddI, and that not receiving it their lives are in serious danger;

that no quantity of ddI to be destined to "compassionate use" is yet available;

ask to know:

- what the Minister intends to do,

1- to destine at least 60% of the product ddI for compassionate use;

2- to exert the necessary pressure on the Bristol Myers Squibb Company to urge it to distribute in Italy at least as much ddI as the same company distributes in France and Italy or in the other European countries;

3- to ask for the opinion of Italian HIV-sufferers, and for them of the associations of HIV-and AIDS-sufferers, first and foremost the National Coordination of HIV-positive People.

Whether it deems useful, in order to make Italian HIV-sufferers participate in the decision-making processes that regard their very lives, to accept the request advanced by their National Coordination to include their President and three of their Delegates among the members of the National Committee for the struggle against AIDS.

Such international demand for greater participation can be gathered from the S.Francisco document drafted during the 6th World Conference on AIDS as well as from the recommendations of the WHO to the medical authorities of every country.

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