amfAR Applauds Remarks on U.S. Global AIDS Leadership from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
Secretary announces PEPFAR treatment costs fall by 24%
Foundation calls for Administration to act decisively on recent scientific breakthroughs to begin to end the epidemic
For Immediate Release
Cub Barrett, Program Communications Manager
NEW YORK, November 8, 2011—amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, welcomed remarks delivered Tuesday by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton that reinforced the role of American leadership in the global response to HIV/AIDS, and urged the Obama Administration to implement policies that could begin to end the worldwide AIDS epidemic.
Secretary Clinton delivered her remarks at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) amid increasing enthusiasm in the scientific community that accelerated progress in reducing HIV incidence and mortality is within our reach. In July, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease at the NIH, wrote in the journal Science that “…we now have the unprecedented opportunity, based on solid scientific data, to control and ultimately end the AIDS epidemic.”
“Our efforts have helped set the stage for the historic opportunity the world has today: To change the course of this pandemic and usher in an AIDS-free generation,” Clinton said. She also announced that PEPFAR (President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief) treatment costs have fallen to $335 per patient, including ARVs and services—a 24% decrease just in the last year. Additionally, Clinton announced an initiative to scale up combination prevention, including treatment, in four countries, and challenged other donors to join us in the effort to “defeat AIDS.”
During the past 18 months, several major research studies have shown the potential to make great strides against the global epidemic, including the use of voluntary medical male circumcision to reduce HIV incidence and earlier initiation of AIDS treatment to reduce the likelihood of one partner passing HIV to another. Other recent studies have demonstrated the efficacy of using vaginal microbicides to prevent infection in women, and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in both heterosexual and homosexual populations. These approaches, combined with behavioral interventions, condom access, prevention of mother-to-child transmission, syringe exchange programs, and other initiatives present the opportunity to make real progress against the epidemic, said amfAR CEO Kevin Robert Frost.
“Right now, we have an unprecedented opportunity to make dramatic progress in response to AIDS around the world,” Frost said. “If we invest strategically now and continue to fund cutting-edge research, we can alter the trajectory of the epidemic and accelerate progress toward a vaccine and, ultimately, a cure. Beginning to end AIDS could be the legacy of our generation.”
“Secretary Clinton today outlined the tremendous opportunity at hand,” said amfAR Vice President and Director of Public Policy Chris Collins. “We applaud the Secretary’s leadership on global AIDS and her vision to combat the disease moving forward. With all the impressive scientific advances of the last year, expectations are high for decisive policy action to begin to end this terrible epidemic.”
To read the transcript or watch the full video of Secretary Clinton’s remarks, click here.
amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is one of the world’s leading nonprofit organizations dedicated to the support of AIDS research, HIV prevention, treatment education, and the advocacy of sound AIDS-related public policy. Since 1985, amfAR has invested nearly $325 million in its programs and has awarded grants to more than 2,000 research teams worldwide.