Obama Issues Executive Order to Step Up National HIV/AIDS Strategy

President Obama announced a new initiative Monday to fight HIV in the United States by better coordinating federal efforts against the virus. In an executive order, Obama repeated his commitment to an “AIDS-free generation” and described a new working group to support the administration’s 2010 National HIV/AIDS Strategy.

The director of the Office of National AIDS Policy, Dr. Grant Colfax, will direct the initiative and jointly head the working group with the federal Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

The order directs Colfax and Sebelius to convene representatives from major federal departments and agencies to review new literature on HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention. The group is required to submit recommendations for improving federal efforts to stop HIV to the president within 180 days. Members of the working group are also asked to meet with stakeholders.

The proposal met with skepticism from the largest nonprofit HIV/AIDS healthcare provider in the United States, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF). Representatives of the group criticized the White House for “empty words,” and noted criticism of Obama’s anti-AIDS efforts during his recent trip to Africa.

“If indeed the president has finally understood the importance of this issue and will proactively address our concerns, then we will applaud that effort, but not until then,” said AHF President Michael Weinstein in a statement.

“We have wasted 4 1/2 years trying to educate this president about the tragedy that is AIDS in the world. The war against AIDS has not been won. Keep your promise, Mr. President. Play a real leadership role here and abroad. Your legacy depends on it.”

Read more:  http://thehill.com/blogs/healthwatch/public-global-health/311043-obama-steps-up-fight-against-hiv

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This entry was posted in Current Events in Healthcare, Health Topics and tagged , , , , by Heather Swift. Bookmark the permalink.

About Heather Swift

Heather “Swifty” Swift has been Kicking mAss since 1998. At 28 she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer as a recently single mom with two small babies on her hip. After completing treatment with the thought that cancer was in her rear view mirror she worked, locally, as a volunteer for Ithaca Breast Cancer Alliance doing community outreach to be certain that no one faced cancer alone. In 2005, she had a secondary diagnosis of breast cancer and tested positive for the BRCA2 mutation, which only amped up her commitment to creating positive change and to becoming a strong and effective advocate for the young adult cancer community. Now, at age 42, Swifty, her partner, Brian, and her two teenage children work together locally, nationally and internationally to advocate for change. Swifty regularly meets with legislators to work towards tangible change in health care, legislation that addresses the needs of cancer patients, care-partners, and families. She works directly with clinicians, medical/nursing students, youth & college students, cancer support organizations and others to educate them about the special needs of young adults living with a cancer diagnosis. Swifty is passionate about providing support by connecting people living with cancer to resources, to other cancer survivors, and to mobilizing and training individuals and groups to find their inner advocate. Swifty currently works with a number of amazing, hand-selected organizations, which provide her with opportunities to educate, to advocate, and to change the conversation about cancer and to work to bring an end to the disease. A few include: LiveSTRONG, mAss Kickers, Imerman Angels, National Breast Cancer Coalition, Cancer Resource Center of the Finger Lakes, Dusty Showers & The Second Basemen, and Stupid Cancer. Swifty is an oncology nursing student in upstate New York, loves time with her family, paddling sports, and peanut butter. She is a Virgo, but not the really anal-retentive type. Her strange fascination with superheroes makes her popular in geek circles, but it can be endearing. Swifty will be riding a llama across Oregon in July of 2012 and really does believe we can achieve and end to cancer and in world peace. Motto: Never Give Up! Favorite quote: “Our own life has to be our message.” ― Thich Nhat Hanh

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