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Global HIV/AIDS Response Reaches ‘Critical Juncture,’ Requires ‘Reappraisal Of Strategies’

Foreign Policy: Welcome to the Next Deadly AIDS Pandemic
Laurie Garrett, former senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations

“…For years, humanity had [HIV] on the run, and death tolls plunged to joyously low levels. But the disease is now poised, for the first time in recent memory, to add massively to its global death toll … since 1981. Three factors are contributing to its runaway resurgence: flawed public health strategy, rapidly shifting demography, and diminished resources. … Humanity’s war with AIDS has reached a dangerous, critical juncture, forcing a collective reappraisal of strategies used to treat the infected and prevent spread of the virus. This should be a pivot point for rethinking the scientific mission — its funding, urgency, and directions — bringing fresh vitality and robust energy to the search for an effective immune system response to the constantly mutating, deadly virus. The treatment strategy now in use … must be seen as an opportunity to buy the world time, saving lives, until a technology that truly vanquishes the HIV threat is discovered and put to use…” (7/25).

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