Good catch Kitty. I've read before that many African activists are not exactly impressed with the Gates Foundation either for similar reasons. Then there is the questionable ethics behind testing:
CAMEROON: Clinical trial of anti-HIV drug on sex workers in questionhttp://www.irinnews.org/report.aspx?reportid=52813
YAOUNDE, 27 January 2005 (IRIN) - The government of Cameroon has said it may stop the clinical trial of an anti-AIDS drug being tested on 400 sex workers in the port city of Douala following allegations that the women are receiving inadequate counselling and medical care.
The drug in question is Tenofovir, an antiretroviral (ARV) drug manufactured by the US pharmaceutical company Gilead, which has been sold under the brand name Viread for the past three years.
Now the drug is being tested as a possible prophylactic to prevent people becoming infected with the HI virus.
However, AIDS activists in Cameroon and France have alleged that the women volunteers taking part in the clinical trial in Douala have not been sufficiently informed of the risks involved.
Worse still, they have accused Gilead and its agents who are conducting the clinical trial in Cameroon, of failing to guarantee free healthcare to the sex workers if they become infected during the course of the trial.
These critics say the women would be treated very differently if the same trial was being conducted in Europe or the United States...
...The clinical trial in Cameroon was launched in September 2004 with 400 sex workers who were free of infection from the virus. Half of them were given a daily pill of Tenofovir, the other half a placebo.
Similar trials are being conducted on sex-workers in Cameroon, Ghana and Nigeria, and on homosexual men in the United States, with the support of a US $6.5 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
However, Gilead was forced to scrap the planned trial of Tenofovir on sex workers in Cambodia last year following a similar row over ethics....
Personally, I find it distasteful that the Gates Foundation's charitable funding is limited and tied to pharmaceutical corporate interests.
Lots of hits earlier this year regarding the Foundation's questionable investments in such companies as BP Oil etc.:http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/299725_gates15.html