News / Health

Obama on AIDS: 'We Can Beat This Disease'

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks at a World AIDS Day event at George Washington University in Washington, December 1, 2011.
U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks at a World AIDS Day event at George Washington University in Washington, December 1, 2011.

President Barack Obama has set new goals and new commitments in the fight against AIDS.  The president pledged to make anti-AIDS drugs available to more people in America and around the world.

At a World AIDS Day event in Washington, President Barack Obama said the world can beat the disease.

The president pledged that the United States will help an additional two million people in hard-hit countries get access to anti-retroviral drugs by the end of 2013.  “And today we are setting a new target of helping six million people get treatment by the end of 2013,” he said.

Obama also announced plans to increase spending on HIV treatment in the United States by $50 million.

The president said the rate of new HIV infections is dropping elsewhere in the world, but it remains steady in the United States and more work is needed.

“This fight is not over.  Not for the 1.2 million Americans who are living with HIV right now.  Not for the Americans who are infected every day.  This fight is not over for them, it is not over for their families.  And as a consequence, it cannot be over for anybody in this room.  And it certainly is not over for your president,” Obama stated.

The president also called for countries that have committed to the Global Fund to give the money they promised.  He also called for countries that have not pledged, specifically China, to do so.

Former President George W. Bush also took part in the event, by a video link from Tanzania, where he is working on an initiative to fight cervical cancer in women with HIV.

During his presidency, Bush enacted the PEPFAR program, in which the United States spent $15 billion over five years to fight HIV/AIDS globally.

The former president also called for wealthy nations to contribute more to the fight against AIDS, despite their economic problems.

“And when you go through a budgetary struggle, it seems like to me the best thing to do is to set priorities, and to focus on that which is effective.  There is nothing more effective than PEPFAR,” Bush said.

PEPFAR is credited with making anti-retrovirals widely available and saving millions of lives.

Bush’s predecessor, former President Bill Clinton, also took part in the World AIDS Day event.

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs