Powell Sets Goals for U.S. Funding to Fight AIDS
June 17, 2003
Secretary of State Colin Powell said Saturday part of the United States' $15 billion package to fight HIV/AIDS would include spending on education to encourage sexual abstinence in polygamous African societies. Speaking to CNN television, Powell also said Washington is working with drug companies and the UN to lower the cost of the antiretroviral treatments needed by millions with HIV in poor countries.Adapted from:
"Polygamous means you have more than one partner but it's within some family unit. What we're saying is that young people especially should be very careful about indiscriminate sex. ... Abstention means that you are protected," said Powell. Drawing on Uganda's program of abstinence, faithfulness, and then condoms, Powell argued for an approach that encourages mature sexual activity, preferably within the institution of marriage.
While acknowledging that drug prices need to go down even more, Powell said the price of antiretroviral drugs had dropped significantly over the past three years. "We're working with drug companies, we're working with [UN] Secretary-General Kofi Annan, it's important to get the price down even lower," Powell said.
On May 27, President Bush signed into law a $15 billion plan to combat AIDS in Africa and the Caribbean, effectively tripling U.S. spending on the disease over the next five years. But critics point out the proposed budget for next year includes just over half of the $3 billion promised. For his part, Powell addressed the need to attack the problem on many fronts. "So there are many things we have to do. ... We have to get the delivery systems in place so these drugs can be administered ... and we have to educate people so they won't need these drugs in the first place, we have to continue to invest in a cure for HIV/AIDS."
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.