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An analysis of the claim that the social welfare response to HIV/AIDS was, and remains, fundamentally inadequate

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Paul B.
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  1. Introduction
  2. British AIDS cases in 1985: Cross over into heterosexuals
  3. 1986: Sharp break in the pattern of AIDS policy
  4. Budget to cover large costs in the NHS for financing AIDS patients
  5. Public education campaigns
  6. Day and Klien: Reflection of the Government's action
  7. The Major Government of 1992
  8. Refining the definitions of chronic and terminal illnesses used in benefit claims: Inclusion of HIV/AIDS
  9. Conclusion

The first official case of AIDS in Britain was recorded in 1983 but nurses said they were caring for unofficial cases before [Ferlie and Pettigrew 1990:195]. Similar to America early reports were confined to the homosexual population. When looking at initial attitudes to the disease if we look at the statement provided by Day and Klein the confused nature of the debate comes to light." The AIDS epidemic is defined as a case study of the Government forced to cope with uncertainty, moral ambiguity and knowledge that there are no solutions, only ways of limiting damage." [Day and Klein 1989:337]. To return to the initial question, social welfare concerns the social services response in relation to the benefits given to groups of society affected by the epidemic. Watney states "it important to consider the full significance of the Governments continuing failure to support community based health education and care among the social groups most severely affected by HIV disease since 1981". [Watney 1991:4].

[...] Britain has relatively low rates of infection, compared to other European countries, the USA and obviously Africa where the problem is certainly an epidemic (Hatfield and Walker 1998:9). Similarly, the establishment of an informal network of centers of excellence available in healthcare with examples of excellent social and community care since the late 1990's provided by Local Education authorities and community and voluntary groups (Hatfield and Walker 1998:9), was commended. Also progress has been made by people living with HIV/AIDS tackling discrimination and developing self help and peer support that have been more recent movements since the 1995 Disabled Discrimination Act. [...]


[...] The discussion will respond to ideas that direct social welfare is inadequate; also whether other types of response were adequate such as indirect social welfare and investigating political and social implications on why certain action was not appropriate. As stated in the introduction, the first documented case of AIDS in Britain occurred in 1983. At this point there wasn't very much known about the disease, nor was it to be known what the extent was going to be. "The initial phase of the disease in early 1980's is characterized as one of official neglect. [...]


[...] This campaign is successful for indirect social welfare in making the public aware HIV/AIDS with advertising but this was on the basis that people make their own conclusions and not really telling the whole story. Not part of the advertising campaign but another piece of policy emphasizing gay prejudice was Section 28 of local government in 1987, in aspects of school curriculum. "The prime minister was said to be a great personal supporter of clause 28, amendment to the local government bill introduced 1987 which forbade councils and schools from promoting homosexuality (Garfield 1996:114). [...]

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