Biden will mark World AIDS Day with new national HIV/AIDS strategy

Biden's strategy will be the nation's third HIV strategy
Originally Published: 01 DEC 21 05:11 ET

(CNN) — President Joe Biden will mark World AIDS Day on Wednesday by unveiling a new national HIV/AIDS strategy with the goal of ending the HIV epidemic by 2030, a senior administration official told CNN.

The strategy — something Biden had promised on the campaign trail — will provide a “framework and direction for the administration’s policies, research, the programs and planning through the year 2025 to lead us toward ending the HIV epidemic in the United States by 2030,” the official said.

The goals outlined in the strategy include preventing new HIV infections, improving health outcomes for people with HIV, reducing health inequity and establishing a more coordinated effort to address the epidemic. The strategy identifies a number of “priority populations,” including Black women, trans women, people ages 13 to 24, people who inject drugs and Black, Latino and American Indian/Alaska Native men.

The official said this plan, which is the nation’s third national HIV strategy, is different because of its “whole of government approach,” adding that the administration recognizes “racism as a serious public health threat.”

“There are several updates in this and some of those new features or new areas of focus have come about from both community input as well as sitting down with our federal partners and thinking about also the priorities of this administration where there is a focus on equity,” the senior official said.

The President will deliver remarks on Wednesday for World AIDS Day, where he will acknowledge “not only those we’ve lost to HIV, but the resilience of the HIV community and the progress that we’ve made over 40 years,” the official added.

This World AIDS Day comes 40 years after the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officially reported the first cases.

Despite the US setting a goal in 1997 to find an HIV vaccine within 10 years, four decades later there is still no vaccine or cure. While new treatments have made the diagnosis more manageable and even helped prevent infection, public health challenges remain.

There are disparities in access to treatment, and Black and Hispanic Americans are disproportionately affected by HIV. Resistance to HIV/AIDS medications also has become increasingly common.

About 1.1 million people in the US were living with HIV at the end of 2019, according to the CDC.

The-CNN-Wire
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