The Obama administration calls for an "AIDS-free generation"

The AIDS Institute notes that Florida alone has over 3,000 patients on the waiting list for its AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP), which represents 50 percent of the entire nation's ADAP waiting list. The Institute writes that "these waiting lists mean that even though life-saving medications are available, these ill and poor are denied their medications due to the lack of money by our states' safety-net programs."

According to the CDC, the average cost for HIV treatment is about $367,000 over a lifetime.

The Wall Street Journal reports that beginning in 2012, the CDC will require that 75 percent of the approximately $359 million granted each year to state and local health departments for HIV prevention will go toward programs that get more people tested and into regular care.

The CDC says that about 20 percent of those infected with HIV don't know they're infected.

Also on Thursday, President Obama is scheduled to discuss U.S. efforts to combat AIDS worldwide. Secretary of State Hillary Clnton has cited a study published in May proving that antiretrovirals not only can restore HIV-infected people to good health, but also make them less infectious. Clinton has said this could lead to an "AIDS-free generation."

When that study was published, Anthony Fauci of the National institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said, "The findings of this study strongly indicate that treating an individual with antiretroviral drugs sooner rather than later can have a significant impact on reducing the risk of transmitting HIV to their sexual partner."

December 1 is World AIDS Day, and it will be observed in Tampa Thursday evening with the annual Tampa Bay Red Ribbon Run, an event hosted by the AIDS Institute and Metro Wellness and Community Centers.

Participants will either engage in a 3K run or a one-mile walk through Lowry Park Zoo to support HIV/AIDS education, advocacy, prevention, and treatment programs for the 140,000 Floridians living with the HIV disease.

According to a study released by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) earlier this week, nearly three out of four people in the U.S. infected with HIV are not getting enough medicine or regular care to stay healthy or prevent themselves from transmitting the virus to others.

Such news is in stark contrast to much of the mainstream reporting on HIV/AIDS in America over the past decade, as antiretroviral drugs have allowed hundreds of thousands of people in this country to remain healthy, when previously being diagnosed with the virus was considered tantamount to a death sentence.


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