Clinton To Release HIV/AIDS Policy

Armen Hareyan's picture

Sen. HillaryRodham Clinton (N.Y.), who is running for the Democratic presidentialnomination, on Tuesday while campaigning in South Carolina is expected to announce aplan to fight HIV/AIDS domestically and abroad, the NewYork Timesreports. Clinton's "two main rivals"for the Democratic nomination -- Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) and former Sen. John Edwards (N.C.) --already have released HIV/AIDS plans, the Times reports. The threeplans are "similar in terms of spending, goals and differences withPresident Bush's AIDS policy," according to the Times.

Clinton's plan,like Edwards' and Obama's, will propose spending at least $50 billion by 2013on initiatives to fight HIV/AIDS worldwide. The Bush administration hasallocated $30 billion for the same time period. Clinton's plan also will propose doublingfunding for HIV/AIDS research at NIH to $5.2 billion annually. Edwards' plan,which was released in September, pledges to "strengthen" spending forsuch research, while Obama, who released parts of his plan at different timesthroughout the year, said he would "expand" research funding.

According to the Times, the three plans would not focus HIVprevention strategies on abstinence-only education. A paper provided by Clinton's campaign thatoutlines her plan says that she supports providing young people with"age-appropriate information about HIV/AIDS and how to protect themselvesagainst it." Clinton, Edwards and Obama also all support federal fundingfor needle-exchange programs.


In addition, the paper outlining Clinton's plansays that she would work to "significantly" reduce the number of newHIV cases in the U.S.each year, as well as to establish measureable targets and timelines forexpanding prevention and treatment services. Obama's plan for reducing newcases is "almost identical to what [Clinton]proposes," the Times reports. Edwards has said that his planfor reducing new cases includes holding his HHS secretary "accountable"for releasing an annual HIV/AIDS report that demonstrates progress towardEdwards' targets. Edwards also has said that he would appoint a"strong" director for the White House Office of National AIDS Policy.

Clinton, Edwards and Obama all pledge to provide HIV-positive people withimproved medical care, primarily through health insurance programs that thethree candidates have proposed this year. According to Clinton campaign advisers, she thinks thatthe current federal plan to combat HIV/AIDS is "diffuse anduncoordinated," according to the Times.

Although HIV/AIDS plans have notbeen a primary topic among the leading Republican presidential candidates, somehave spoken about how increased efforts are needed, according to the Times.Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who is running for the Republicanpresidential nomination, has said that he would increase funding for Bush'sHIV/AIDS programs in Africa. He added that hewould provide aid to fight malaria in Africa, as well as aim to bolster tradebetween the U.S.and the continent (Healy/Altman, New York Times, 11/27).

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