This film is part of Free

Aids: The Last Chance (Part 2)

Government complacency is challenged in the second of a two-part This Week special on the spread of AIDS

Current affairs 1986 27 mins


Part two of This Week's investigation of AIDS and government policy sees presenter Jonathan Dimbleby grill Minister of Health Tony Newton on the potential "catastrophe". Again, the focus is on risks to the heterosexual community, though gay men - statistically at far higher risk - would already have considered the situation pretty catastrophic by 1986. With the first programme having apparently spread panic among pregnant women, this one does challenge confusing advice issued by the Chief Medical Officer, and addresses accusations that government efforts were too little, too late.

A young Sinéad O'Connor appears again in This Week's mock-up ad for 'Prophyltex' extra-strong condoms: astonishingly, even in the late 1980s a case still had to be made for outdated advertising regulations to be relaxed to allow explicit references to sexual health and safe sex practices.