Congratulates President Obama & Encourages Him to Continue to Implement National HIV/AIDS Strategy
WASHINGTON, Nov. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In reaction to yesterday's election results, The AIDS Institute congratulates President Barack Obama on his re-election as our Nation's 44 th President. "We look forward to working with him and his Administration on continuing to implement the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, which he released in June 2010. President Obama and his Administration have begun to make progress in decreasing the number of new HIV infections by focusing resources on the areas and communities most impacted by HIV, including gay men of all races and ethnicities and African-American men and women," commented Marylin Merida, Board President, The AIDS Institute. "It is gratifying that the Administration will be able to continue its policy of relying on science to inform and guide the policies and programs they pursue," continued Merida.
Implementing the Affordable Care Act is perhaps the best way to meet many of the goals of the Strategy, particularly increasing access to care and optimizing health outcomes for people with HIV/AIDS. The American people have spoken and the results of the election should encourage an end to the debate on whether the law should be repealed or a state should move forward with its Medicaid expansion."The AIDS Institute realizes that some difficult decisions must be made in Washington in the coming weeks. As the President works with the Congress on averting the 'fiscal cliff,' we urge them to reach an agreement that will prevent the devastating sequestration cuts to domestic HIV/AIDS programs that total more than $500 million. A balanced solution must be found that will address the federal deficit and does not cut critical programs such as Medicaid and Medicare on which so many people with HIV/AIDS depend," stated Michael Ruppal, Executive Director, The AIDS Institute. In addition to implementing health reform, ensuring continuation and full funding of the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program, including the AIDS Drug Assistance Program, will be at the top of The AIDS Institute's agenda. Currently, 37 percent of people with HIV are retained in care and only 25 percent have a suppressed viral load. With health reform and the Ryan White Program these numbers can be greatly improved.