Battling Pediatric AIDS
Restoring hope and health to entire communities
A trip to Romania in 1996 was a life changer, not just for Dr. Mark Kline, but for thousands of children with HIV/AIDS. A pediatric infectious diseases expert at Baylor College of Medicine, Kline was shocked to find children with HIV/AIDS dying because of no access to the highly active antiretroviral therapy that had revolutionized treatment of the disease in the Western world.
By the time the plane landed in Houston, he had outlined a plan, the Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative, that would help the HIV-infected children of Romania and, eventually, the world. Five years later, BIPAI opened its first center of excellence in Romania. Two years after that, BIPAI extended its reach into Africa, first in Botswana and in the years that followed, across the continent.
The Baylor Pediatric AIDS Corps (and its successor, the Texas Children’s Global Health Corps) provided young doctors to staff the clinics and develop the local expertise to sustain the operation.
Today, the Baylor College of Medicine Pediatric AIDS Initiative at Texas Children’s Hospital cares for more than 300,000 children and their families in 15 centers and satellite clinics.
Funding from generous partners in the pharmaceutical industry, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and Texas Children’s Hospital was critical to the program’s success. As was BIPAI’s partnership with the local government in each of the places it located, all sharing the goal of saving the lives of children in the communities in which they live.
Kline now serves as chair of the Baylor College of Medicine Department of Pediatrics and physician-in-chief at Texas Children’s Hospital. He continues to see the success of the BIPAI program in restoring hope and health to entire communities.
"Since coming to Houston in 1943, Baylor College of Medicine has been an integral part of Houston’s transition into one of the nation’s greatest cities. We are proud to be part of what makes Houston great."
- Paul Klotman, M.D., President, CEO and Executive Dean, Baylor College of Medicine