The international president of “Doctors Without Borders” spoke at Luther College in Decorah last night. Dr. Morten Rostrup urged Iowans to think about the plight of Africans who suffer from diseases that can be cured with drugs, but the drugs aren’t available or are too expensive. Dr. Rostrup says most of the world’s medical research is directed at curing the rich, not the poor. Three-hundred thousand Africans are suffering from “sleeping sickness” today. There’s a treatment, but it’s not been produced by drug companies for years. Now, it is, as pharmaceutical companies found a new market for the drug. Rostrup says the drug’s now being marketed as an ointment for women who want to retard the growth of facial hair. It’s still not readily available for Africans who are dying of sleeping sickness. Rostrup says it’s an “obscene” situation. Rostrup, who’s from Norway, has been involved in “Doctors Without Borders” since 1995, when he went on a doctoring mission to Rwanda and Zaire.
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