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WANTED: Global AIDS Coordinator
Date:1/16/2009

damant refusal to integrate family planning and HIV prevention has undermined efforts to stop the spread of HIV among women and girls.

The new Global AIDS Coordinator must be a visionary who understands the importance of comprehensive education for youth; the integration of family planning and HIV prevention; and the urgency of addressing stigma and discrimination.

In the months ahead, the Global AIDS Coordinator will be responsible for drafting the guidance that will direct new funding under the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). That guidance will be the determining factor in whether funded countries are able to develop a comprehensive, evidence-based approach to HIV prevention, treatment and care. Given President-elect Obama's commitment to science-based public policy, it is troubling that these new regulations will be drafted by a public official who promoted ideology at the expense of HIV prevention.

There is clear evidence that the abstinence-until-marriage restrictions of PEPFAR have seriously undermined comprehensive strategies to stop the spread of HIV at the country level.

The Obama Administration still has an opportunity to change direction. Let's hope that they will seize that opportunity by appointing a new Global AIDS Coordinator with a truly science-based vision for HIV prevention, and an authentic commitment to global youth.


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SOURCE Advocates for Youth
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