President Joe Biden is seeking $670 million from Congress in his discretionary proposal to end HIV/AIDS permanently, a total activists say is not enough.
"The last year of unfathomable human loss and health system collapse during colliding pandemics should have taught us the importance of investing in the human right to health, including making life-saving medicines available to all people, worldwide," Health GAP Director Matthew Rose said, according to The Hill.
"We know how to end AIDS, but elected leaders still lack the will to make it a reality. This is not the time to turn a blind eye to the devastating impact of underfunding the HIV response."
The Biden administration said the funds would "help accelerate and strengthen efforts to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States."
Around 1.2 million people in the United States are living with HIV today. The Executive Office of Management and Budget said Biden is seeking to add $267 million on top of former President Donald Trump's spending on the matter, which will go to the Department of Health and Human Services, Yahoo News reported.
In 2019, Trump started the "Ending the HIV Epidemic" program, which aimed to reduce HIV infections by 90% by 2030.
Although appreciative of Biden's proposal, Carl Schmid, executive director of the HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute, also said the efforts would not be enough.
"While it falls short of what the community has requested, if this funding is released, it will continue the momentum already created and make further progress in ending HIV in the US," Schmid said. "Efforts to end HIV will help eradicate an infectious disease that we have been battling for the last 40 years and help correct racial and health inequities in our nation."
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