The White House is unveiling its new National HIV-AIDS Strategy, and one health expert says, it’s a bit of a case of “do as I say, not as I do.”
Believe it or not, up until now, the US has never had a national strategy for fighting HIV-AIDS.
“It’s paradoxical that in many countries that we are working in we have recommended they have a national AIDS strategy, but in fact we never did,” said Dr. Carlos Del Rio, chair of the Global Health department at Emory University’s School of Medicine. Click to Listen
He says the administration has some pretty ambitious goals, including reducing the annual number of new infections by 25 percent. And while no new money will be added to the nation’s $19 billion HIV-AIDS budget, money will be re-directed to better serve the most “at risk” populations.
“Most of the new infections nowadays are occurring among men who have sex with men, and most of the new infections are occurring among African Americans, so you really need to be sure that your prevention efforts and prevention monies are actually targeting the most effected community,” said Del Rio.
Another goal is to boost access to care and increase the proportion of patients linked to care within three months of their diagnosis from 65 to 85 percent.