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Foreign Aid Investment Saves Millions Of Lives, Reflects American Leadership

Chris Collins, vice president and director of public policy at the Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR), and Khai Hoan Tram, an Allan Rosenfield Fellow at amfAR, write in this Huffington Post opinion piece that what’s missing from the discussion of foreign aid — which accounts for approximately one percent of the U.S. national budget — “is the fact that [it] is actually used to aid those in need while advancing our country’s humanitarian and diplomatic goals. And it’s working.”

“Far from being ‘weapons of war,’ our foreign aid investments save lives with antiretroviral treatment (ARV) to treat HIV/AIDS; insecticide-treated bed nets (ITN) to prevent malaria; food aid for those suffering from famine; and earthquake and other natural disaster relief,” they write, adding that “our global health investments — and the major successes they have brought about — also reflect America’s moral strength, character, and leadership in the world.” They note that “according to a new analysis (.pdf) by amfAR, … U.S. global health programs improve, extend, and save the lives of millions of people worldwide. If foreign aid is cut, as many of [the Republican presidential] candidates insisted [in a recent debate] it should be, millions of people will lose life-saving treatment and services” (10/26).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.