Does aid for HIV respond to media pressure?
Media attention towards HIV-related issues has increased dramatically over the past two decades. In this paper, we test whether this growing attention is affecting donorsâ€™ disbursement of aid for HIV to African countries. We use information available on the number of articles and press documents on HIV issues and other health concerns published in donor countries to construct proxies of domestic and international media coverage. These proxies are then included as explanatory variables in a regression of aid for HIV to Africa. After controlling for a number of donor characteristics, we find that greater media coverage increases aid disbursement. This may be positive for the anti-HIV campaign, but may result in displacement effects to the extent that other diseases that cause greater mortality and morbidity receive less media coverage than HIV/AIDS.
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