WASHINGTON (July 30, 2015) – I congratulate Douglas M. Brooks, Director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy on the release of the updated National HIV/AIDS Strategy for the United States to guide the Nation’s efforts through 2020. This updated Strategy holds the potential to make the next five years as consequential to our collective work as the last five years have been.
In 2010, President Obama fulfilled a commitment to the HIV community by releasing the first comprehensive Strategy. This was a five-year plan to guide the efforts of all stakeholders working to end the HIV epidemic in the United States. Today, I can only feel gratitude that the President has built such a strong legacy of consistent and strategic leadership in addressing HIV by implementing new insurance coverage options under the Affordable Care Act, refocusing prevention efforts and better aligning funding under the High Impact Prevention initiative, supporting and embracing significant research advances including the deployment of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) as a promising new prevention intervention and promoting immediate initiation of HIV treatment on diagnosis, as well as continually supporting the essential Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program and other federal HIV programs.
Federal HIV program staff at all levels have truly reinvigorated the federal response to HIV and people living with HIV, community advocates, providers and others have collaborated in new ways and demonstrated a willingness to support difficult, but necessary policy and programmatic changes.
I am particularly encouraged to see the further refinement of indicators in the updated Strategy so that we can better monitor our progress and adapt our responses to new information. I am also pleased to see a strengthening of the Strategy’s focus on valuing all communities impacted by HIV, but doing even more to highlight those at highest risk, including young Black gay and bisexual men.
I am humbled to have been able to play a role in working with the HIV community to sharpen our national focus on responding to the HIV epidemic. Every day, we must push ourselves to do more to achieve the Strategy’s vision of a world where new HIV infections are rare and all people living with HIV in this country have access to high quality life-extending care free from stigma and discrimination. About Jeffrey Crowley
Mr. Crowley is the Program Director of the National HIV/AIDS Initiative at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and Distinguished Scholar. He is a widely recognized expert on HIV/AIDS and disability policy. He served as the Director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy and Senior Advisor on Disability Policy from 2009-2011. In this role, he led the development of the 2010 National HIV/AIDS Strategy for the United States.
The views reflected in this expert column are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent those of the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law or Georgetown University. This blog is solely informational in nature, and not intended as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed and retained attorney in your state or country.