A top Malawi health official, on Tuesday, said that the country would provide an extra 35 dollars a month to civil servants carrying HIV. Malawi, one of the poorest countries in Africa, has provided this extra money so that people carrying HIV can get better nutrition.
"It is not extra pay but a workplace programme for nutritional support for people to respond to treatment quickly," Mary Shaba, principal secretary for Nutrition, HIV-AIDS programme, told AFP.
Malawi has 120,000 public servants whose monthly salaries average 70 dollars (48 euros) although the number of those with HIV is unknown.
Shaba said the initial idea of the initiative was to help public servants carrying the virus to buy anti-retrovirals, but since Malawi introduced free ARV drugs in 2004, "the civil servants who are HIV-positive now need nutritional support."
Official estimates indicate that around 14 percent of Malawi's 12 million population is HIV-positive.