November 7, 2020
Contact: Jennifer Burke
HIV+Hep Congratulates President-Elect Biden
Must Continue Ending HIV Initiative
& Commit to Ending Hepatitis
Washington DC… The HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute has issued the following statement from Executive Director Carl Schmid following the announcement of the results of the 2020 presidential election:
“The HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute congratulates President-elect Joe Biden on his election as the nation’s 46th president. We look forward to working with him and his administration on efforts to end HIV in the United States. During the campaign, Biden committed to ending HIV by 2025, five years earlier than the Trump administration’s current initiative to end HIV. To achieve this goal, President-elect Biden and his administration will have to provide a sharpened focus on accelerating HIV prevention and treatment programs, demonstrate leadership at the highest levels of government, galvanize community support, and increase financial resources towards ending HIV. The FY2022 budget proposal Biden’s administration will submit to the Congress will be a strong indicator whether current efforts to end HIV will be ramped up.
“HIV+Hep also urges President-elect Biden to declare ending hepatitis a priority. Hepatitis B and C are two infectious diseases that can be easily prevented by vaccination for hepatitis B and cured for hepatitis C. However, with over 5 million Americans estimated to be living with viral hepatitis and new infections continuing to climb, the U.S. government provides only $39 million to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to carry out nationwide testing, surveillance, education, and linkage to treatment programs. The U.S. has signed on to the World Health Organization’s declaration to end hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030. The nation’s first ever federal strategic plan to end viral hepatitis is expected to be released by the end of the year, and heightened leadership and financial resources will be necessary to fully implement it.
“Finally, HIV+Hep looks forward to working with President-elect Biden on ensuring all Americans have access to affordable quality healthcare. We remain committed to ensuring the Affordable Healthcare Act (ACA) remains the law of the land and is improved, as necessary, to better meet the needs of patients. In recent years, the ACA, along with other health safety net programs such as Medicaid, have been under attack. As changes are proposed, HIV+Hep will work to ensure that the needs of patients with serious and chronic conditions are maintained, particularly as they access prescription drugs.
“To accomplish these goals, President-elect Biden and his administration will need the support of the U.S. Congress. HIV+Hep congratulates the new members of the House and Senate and looks forward to advancing these bipartisan public health goals with them.”
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