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GAA Calls on President Obama to Act on the Reality of AIDS
Date:11/30/2009

EPFAR was reauthorized in 2008, funding levels were authorized that would have paid for the treatment about 40 percent of medically-eligible people globally, with most of those in Africa.

Going forward, newly-released treatment guidelines from the World Health Organization expand the definition and numbers of those who are medically eligible to include up to five million additional people, for a total of up to 18.7 million people who are in need of treatment. Those newly eligible for ART include persons with CD-4 counts under 350 (instead of the former limit of 200), and HIV-positive women who breastfeed their infants, both of which have been an existing standard of care in the global north, thereby eliminating a double standard for people living with HIV depending on where they live.

Under these new treatment guidelines, and with projections of continued flat lining of U.S. support for global AIDS, GAA estimates that the projected 2010 U.S. budget for global AIDS will provide ART for only 16% percent of those who are medically eligible to receive it.

The President needs to understand that this epidemic is far from over. Every year, almost three million people become infected with HIV, and two million die from AIDS related diseases. The US government is not fulfilling its promises and moral obligations to help prevent those new infections and AIDS deaths.

We are joined by U.S. faith leaders in our call on the Administration to not just reflect, but act on, the reality of AIDS as it considers its 2011 budget plans and its new Global Health Initiative. We look forward to reviewing the President's new 5-year PEPFAR strategy, which has been announced for release this week, to determine if it meets the reality of the AIDS epidemic as we know it.

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SOURCE Global AIDS Alliance
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