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Press Release
President Obama Announces National HIV/AIDS Community Discussions
First Event, the Atlanta HIV/AIDS Community Discussion, to be Held on August 25th at the 2009 National HIV Prevention Conference. Community Discussions Will Feed Into the Development of a National HIV/AIDS Strategy

August 21, 2009

Washington, D.C. -- President Obama today announced the launch of the National HIV/AIDS Community Discussions, a series of events to be held across the country. These events, hosted by the White House Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP) will offer the public a chance to provide input as the White House works to fulfill the President's pledge to develop a National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS). The first event, the Atlanta HIV/AIDS Community Discussion, will be held on August 25th at the 2009 National HIV Prevention Conference.

"HIV remains an serious challenge to the American people and I am committed to developing an effective National HIV/AIDS Strategy," said President Obama. "The National HIV/AIDS Community Discussions will provide an opportunity for members of the public to give their input on how we can best address this crucial issue. With the insights from communities across the country, we will have a strategy that is focused on the goals of reducing HIV incidence, getting people living with HIV/AIDS into care and improving health outcomes, and reducing HIV-related health disparities."

With more than 56,000 new HIV infections occurring in the United States each year, the President believes that we must re-focus national attention on the domestic epidemic. He has articulated three goals for the NHAS: reducing HIV incidence, increasing access to care and optimizing health outcomes, and reducing HIV-related health disparities. The national HIV/AIDS community discussions are just one mechanism for engaging the American people and obtaining input. The Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) will also provide input, and public comments submitted to the ONAP website will also be taken into consideration.

ONAP is part of the White House Domestic Policy Council and is tasked with coordinating the continuing efforts of the United States government to reduce the number of HIV infections across the U.S., and respond to the needs of people living with HIV/AIDS.

The Atlanta HIV/AIDS Community Discussion will be held on August 25th as part of the 2009 National HIV Prevention Conference, which is being held in Atlanta from August 23-26. The Community Discussion is open to conference participants and 200 tickets have been set-aside for the local Atlanta community. ONAP is also meeting with local HIV services organizations while it is in Atlanta.

Other cities in which communities discussions will be held are: Washington, DC; New York, NY; San Francisco, Oakland, and Los Angeles, CA; Houston, TX; Albuquerque, NM; Jackson, MS; Fort Lauderdale, FL; Minneapolis, MN; Columbia, SC; Puerto Rico; and the Virgin Islands. Specific dates will be announced later.

For those reporters interested in attending the Atlanta HIV/AIDS Community Discussion, registration for media is free. Credentialed journalists may register in advance of the meeting by calling (866) 584-5030, or on site in the conference press center -- located in the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, Chicago Rooms C and D (Exhibit Level). See www.2009nhpc.org for media policies.

WHAT: Atlanta HIV/AIDS Community Discussion

WHO: Jeffrey S. Crowley, M.P.H., Director, White House Office of National AIDS Policy Dázon Dixon Diallo, M.P.H., Founder and President, SisterLove, Inc. Carlos del Rio, M.D., M.P.H., Professor and Chair of the Hubert Department of Global Health, Rollins School of Public Health; Professor of Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases, Emory University School of Medicine Edith Biggers, M.D., Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness Guy Pujol, D.MIN., Executive Director, AIDS Alliance for Faith and Health (AAFH)

WHEN: Tuesday, August 25, 2009, 6:30 - 8:00 p.m.

WHERE: Centennial Ballroom, Hyatt Regency Atlanta, 265 Peachtree Street, NE, Atlanta, GA




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