Turning Blood Into Cash

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is attracting both criticism and praise for offering cash to Chinese individuals who submit to both an HIV and syphilis test—$9 per sample, and an additional $44 for tests that come back positive. Several local AIDS organizations bash the testing initiative, claiming the money only lures individuals interested in collecting a profit. "Gates has created a huge blood-buying operation that only cares about money, not about people," says Ma Tiecheng, founder of a seven-year-old AIDS organization in Shenyang. As part of the program, over 110,000 people have already been tested. Supporters say that's a significant accomplishment, and proof that financial incentives work.