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Commentary & Opinion
Sustained Funding Necessary to Fight HIV/AIDS Among Women, Advocates Say

May 13, 2013

"Mother's Day is a celebration of life and reflects the importance of women to their families, communities and countries. However, worldwide HIV/AIDS robs women and girls of their potential and health," Susan Blumenthal, Huffington Post's public health editor and former assistant U.S. surgeon general, and Annie Chen, a fellow at amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, write in the Huffington Post's "Global Motherhood" blog. "Improving women's health will ... enhance the health of families, communities and countries," they write. "Yet support for lifesaving women's HIV/AIDS programs globally is now in jeopardy," they state and cite proposed cuts to federal spending on global health issues.

"What is urgently needed, instead, are intensified efforts to save the lives of women, including those who are pregnant and new mothers, employing a comprehensive and multifaceted approach," Blumenthal and Chen write, detailing programs they feel should be strengthened and highlighting a graphic from amfAR "that compares the Obama administration, U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate budget proposals." They continue, "Insufficient funding for HIV/AIDS initiatives will shortchange those who are most vulnerable, particularly women, who now represent half of all people living with HIV/AIDS worldwide," concluding, "So starting this Mother's Day, let's strengthen our work together to deliver a world to women that is free from the threat of HIV/AIDS" (5/12).

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