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Rep. Yvette D. Clarke’s Statement on World AIDS Day

U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke (NY-11), released the following statement commemorating World AIDS Day 2010:

“In honor of World AIDS Day 2010, I am reflecting on the challenges that the global community has overcome and the successes we have made and are aiming for as we forge ahead in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

“According to the Global Health Council, the HIV/AIDS epidemic has claimed more than 25 million lives. Currently there are 33 million people living with this disease. Advocacy and funding initiatives are focused on expanding the much needed access to treatment and care.

“Since my election to Congress in 2007, I have worked diligently to ensure that everyone has early access to HIV/AIDS treatment. This year’s theme of ‘Universal Access and Human Rights,’ serves to remind all of how important access to health care access is and how timely the passing of H.R. 3962, Affordable Healthcare for America Act, was for all Americans, especially those with HIV/AIDS. Along with my continued collaboration with the Congressional LGBT Equity Caucus, the ‘Early Treatment for HIV Act’ was incorporated into the base bill of the healthcare reform bill.

“On October 30, 2009, President Obama signed the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act which extends the Ryan White Care Act for four years. The Ryan White program enables hundreds of thousands in America to receive aid. Reauthorizing the Ryan White Act will continue to increase access to primary care and medications by providing additional resources to patients.

“We must all work together to stem the epidemic, in the United States as well abroad, in order to ensure the health and well being of the global community. There is a clear moral imperative for us to do so. “

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