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International News

Conference Marked by Talk of "Cure," Commitment to Greater Investment in Research

July 24, 2012

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The U.S. pledged an additional $150 million for the global AIDS fight, in what Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said was a step designed to move closer to "an AIDS-free generation."

Politicians Praise AIDS Investment, but Urge More Spending and Support
Some of Washington's most powerful people delivered to the 19th International AIDS Conference pretty much the same message: Fighting AIDS is a good investment that is getting better every year, but current spending isn't enough to end the epidemic. Whether the world's richer countries, and especially the United States, will decide to increase spending or alternatively wring more from current investment is a matter of much discussion among the 25,000 researchers, clinicians and activists here through Friday. (Brown and Botelho, The Washington Post, 7/23)

Scientists Make Curing HIV a Priority
An influential group of scientists gathered this week at the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., is committing to a goal that just five years ago would have seemed ludicrous: to cure HIV. After studying the virus for more than 30 years and developing potent drugs that transformed the disease from a death sentence into a manageable chronic condition, a growing number of researchers now say the search for a cure should be a major research priority. (Loury, Los Angeles Times, 7/23)

Talk of "Cure" at Historic AIDS Conference
This week, the world's largest gathering of AIDS doctors and experts is converging on Washington for the 19th International AIDS Conference. ... There's a lot going on: research on how to prevent HIV infection, treatment as prevention and, for the first time in a long time, talk about a "cure." in fact, one of the main themes is the launch of "Towards an HIV Cure": a global scientific strategy by an international working group of 300 researchers who are developing a road map of sorts, outlining priorities for finding a cure for the disease that has claimed approximately 30 million lives worldwide. (Young, CNN:, 7/23)

Big Names Call for More AIDS Funds
Researchers may be turning the corner on the AIDS epidemic -- but eliminating the disease completely will take more research and more money. Such was the message of a series of high-profile talks at the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C. ... but what all of these solutions have in common is that they will cost money -- and in the current fiscal climate, garnering the additional funds necessary to scale up these innovations is a challenge. (Duwell, ABC News, 7/24)

AIDS Returns to the U.S. Spotlight
More than 20,000 people are attending the 19th International AIDS Conference in Washington this week. the meeting features speeches from U.S. Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former first lady Laura Bush, health ministers from many countries around the world, Bill Gates, NIH scientists Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins and hundreds more. (Neel, NPR, 7/23)

U.S. AIDS Cases Come Into View
The HIV epidemic in the U.S. started in 1981, mainly in major cities along the East and West Coasts. the first reports were from Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco among gay and bisexual men. Within months, it was clear that injecting drug users were also getting the virus. Even now, you can see the lingering geographic contours of how the epidemic unfolded. (Neel, NPR, 7/23)

U.S. Adds $150 Million to Fight AIDS, Targets Stigma
The U.S. is adding an extra $150 million to the global AIDS fight, taking a first step toward reaching some stigmatized populations. Despite tough fiscal times, "I am here today to make it absolutely clear the U.S. is committed and will remain committed to achieving an AIDS-free generation," Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told the International AIDS Conference on Monday. (Neergaard, The Associated Press, 7/24)

U.S. Pledges More Funding to Fight AIDS World-Wide
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Monday pledged new funding from the U.S. to curb the global HIV/AIDS pandemic and said the administration has significantly accelerated the pace at which it is getting lifesaving AIDS drugs to developing countries. the initiatives are part of a priority the administration set late last year for what Mrs. Clinton calls an "AIDS-free generation" -- in which HIV infections are virtually eliminated in newborns, risk of infection in adults is far lower than it is today, and treatment is readily available. (McKay, The Wall Street Journal, 7/23)

Hillary Clinton Vows "AIDS-Free Generation" at Conference
Clinton spoke of leveraging public-private partnerships, in addition to coordinating with the Global Fund, which receives major support from the Gates Foundation to fund its efforts against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. She noted that the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDs Relief, known as PEPFAR, is now providing anti-retroviral treatment to almost 4.5 million people worldwide and is on pace to reach its goal of 6 million by the end of next year. (Norman, Politico, 7/23)

Hillary Clinton: AIDS Fight "One We Can Win"
"We have already come so far -- too far to stop now," Clinton said during the conference's opening plenary session. Clinton defined what she means by an "AIDS-free generation" -- a phrase she pioneered late last year in a speech at the NIH -- and she underscored the Obama administration's commitment to defeating the HIV/AIDS pandemic. She also announced -- to repeated applause -- several new financial initiatives and HIV prevention goals. (Smith, Medpage Today, 7/23)

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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
See Also
AIDS 2012 Research & Clinical Coverage

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Please note: Knowledge about HIV changes rapidly. Note the date of this summary's publication, and before treating patients or employing any therapies described in these materials, verify all information independently. If you are a patient, please consult a doctor or other medical professional before acting on any of the information presented in this summary. For a complete listing of our most recent conference coverage, click here.