A paper released Wednesday by the Global AIDS Action Network and the International Center for Research on Women and signed by 30 other AIDS groups has called on the Bush administration to develop a "comprehensive U.S. global AIDS plan" by December 31. The Administration must implement the comprehensive, government-wide plan--which should address both prevention and treatment--if the United States hopes to provide solid leadership on HIV/AIDS issues, according to the groups.
While the U.S. government supplies more funding to global HIV/AIDS programs than any other entity in the world, the country is "undermining its global leadership on AIDS because it has failed to develop" a government-wide plan to address the global pandemic, according to the paper. The HIV/AIDS groups specifically mention the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS as an area of unfulfilled potential.
"The Administration is operating on a 'business as usual' basis in responding to a crisis that is devastating whole countries," said Cheryl Morden, director of policy and communications for ICRW. Some of the other organizations to sign the paper include ACT UP Philadelphia, Africa Action, the AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition, the American Public Health Association, Gay Men's Health Crisis, the Global AIDS Alliance, Population Action International, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, and the Episcopal Church USA.