The head of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy says the war on terrorism will not divert attention or funds from the battle against the pandemic.
Dr. Joseph O’neill became director of the office in July, succeeding Scott Evertz. He says, “the war on terrorism has stimulated both the American public and policymakers in Washington to think more critically and actively about the United States role in the world. And as we look at our role in the world and understand the major threat that HIV/AIDS poses to the world we have I think become much more interested in the global AIDS epidemic.”
He says the strategy of the Bush administration is three-fold: first, recognizing that HIV/AIDS is a critical global problem; second, looking for new ways to stop the pandemic; and finally, listening to all the communities that are affected by HIV/AIDS.
Dr. O'Neill is on the faculty at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and has a clinical practice in the Johns Hopkins Hospital HIV/AIDS Program. He also holds degrees in business administration, public health, as well as health and medical sciences from the University of California at Berkeley. He is also board certified in internal medicine. Like his predecessor, Dr. O'Neill is openly gay.
Dr. O’neill spoke to English to Africa reporter Joe De Capua about his top priorities. Click the above links to hear interview.