Case 326 - Morality, Public Health, and the National Interest: The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)
Dietrich, John W.
In his January 2003 State of the Union address, President George W. Bush called on the United States to commit $15 billion over five years under a new program, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, to address the international HIV/AIDS epidemic. This case study examines how AIDS issues fit into existing and emerging definitions of national interests; explores whether to use bilateral or multilateral funding and programs to combat the disease; and considers whether funding restrictions should include U.S. values on prevention strategies and encourage the use of U.S.-manufactured drugs. Collectively, PEPFAR decisions raised the issue of whether funding programs in the developing world gives rich countries undue leverage over policy choices, and thus represents, intentionally or not, a form of neoimperialism. The study is designed to be used in an introductory or advanced courses in international politics, U.S. foreign policy, or more specialized courses examining ethics in international relations.