Ending HIV Epidemic a Priority for Trump Administration

March 08, 2019 by Alec Stone MA, MPA, Former ONS Director of Government Affairs and Advocacy
Alec Stone
Alec Stone MA, MPA, ONS Public Affairs Director

In a statement during the 2019 State of the Union address, President Trump proposed ending the HIV epidemic by reducing new infections by 75% in the next five years and 90% in the next decade.

Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar hailed Trump’s statement as an important public health initiative (https://www.hhs.gov/blog/2019/02/05/ending-the-hiv-epidemic-a-plan-for-america.html).

“This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to end the epidemic, thanks to the most powerful HIV prevention and treatment tools in history and new tools that allow us to pinpoint where HIV infections are spreading most rapidly,” Azar said.

Citing that the United States spends more than $20 billion annually in direct health expenditures for HIV prevention and care, the president’s plan, Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America, will direct funding and education to the specific communities with the highest HIV rates.

“This is not just as a biomedical issue, but a social challenge, too,” Azar said, vowing to see significant reductions in the near future. Elements of the president’s new plan include:

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