The United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Act of 2003, which became law in May some 17 years after the federal government made its first investments in the fight against HIV/AIDS overseas, is the first comprehensive articulation of U.S. policy toward the global HIV/AIDS epidemic. The new law is the result of a confluence of historic forces and the coming together of a wide and ideologically diverse coalition of key individuals and interest groups, all on behalf of a much expanded U.S. effort to combat the epidemic in the developing world.
In line with President Bush’s personal commitment, the act calls for a major increase in U.S. spending on global HIV/AIDS. It also sets out the basic policy parameters for the expenditure of those funds. In a historic shift of priorities, it commits the lion’s share not to prevention activities but to services for people living with HIV or AIDS. Moreover–and of particular concern to sexual and reproductive health advocates–the relatively modest funds available for prevention will be constrained by a series of last-minute amendments to the legislation that largely reflect the ideology and interests of religious and social-conservatives.
More from Guttmacher: http://www.agi-usa.org/pubs/ib_png03.html