Trump vows to end HIV spread within 10 years, critics skeptical


President Donald Trump is launching a campaign to end the HIV epidemic in the U.S. by 2030, targetting areas where new infections happen and getting highly effective drugs to people at risk.

Over 1 million Americans are now living with HIV. This year's theme, "Together for Love: Stop HIV Stigma", raises awareness that we all have a role to play in stopping HIV stigma. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HIV diagnoses have fallen in recent years among black women (25 percent decline from 2010 to 2016) and heterosexual men (26 percent decline). "Health centers are also a key point of entry for people undiagnosed with HIV", said Sigounas, who explained that almost 2 million people receive HIV tests at the health centers annually.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released a plan that will use a combination of prevention and treatment to eliminate 90 percent of new HIV cases in the United States by 2030.

"In the USA, 1 out of every 8 people infected with HIV does not know it", said Ingham County Health Officer Linda S. Vail.

In 2018, "there were a little over 38 500 new infections in the United States", he said.

Briefing reporters ahead of Trump's State of the Union speech, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and senior public health officials said the campaign relies on fresh insights into where about half of new HIV cases occur - 48 out of some 3,000 US counties, and Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and seven states with at-risk rural residents.

The 48 counties HHS is focussing on are mainly metro areas.

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At the same time, a longtime HIV medication named Truvada can prevent infection if taken daily by healthy people who are at risk from their infected sexual partners, a strategy known as "pre-exposure prophylaxis" or PreP.

"We've never had that kind of 'This is the target, '" Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government's pre-eminent AIDS warrior and head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said to the AP.

Speaking at the Wednesday briefing, he stressed that "if you treat an individual and bring their viral load to below detectable levels, they will not transmit their virus to another individual".

Last week, Governor JB Pritzker signed an executive order to take action to end the HIV epidemic and reduce health disparities by ensuring the state is investing in agencies, programs, and services that work to end the HIV epidemic.

However, as the epidemic disproportionately affects racial and ethnic minorities, women of colour, and men who have sex with men, the drive to end the HIV spread is more a social issue than a scientific one. Medicaid is the single-largest source of insurance for HIV care services, covering more than 40% of people with HIV, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The initial goal is to reduce new HIV infections by 75 per cent in five years.

Jacqueline Wilson of Jackson was diagnosed as HIV positive in 2006. They intend to deploy platoons of community health workers to step up the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of infections. By 2030, the goal is fewer than 100 new HIV cases per year or "functional zero" -a point where the HIV epidemic can no longer sustain itself. "Any plan to end HIV transmission in the USA must centere on the needs of young gay and bisexual men of color in order to be successful". We have PrEP now which is highly effective and readily available. "One of the things that concern us is that the Trump administration has done everything that it can to limit healthcare through trying to dismantle the ACA", said Dr. David Hardy, board chairman for the HIV Medicine Association.