Fight Against AIDS Needs ‘Worldwide Cooperation’; Congress Should Support Money for Global Fund, Editorial Says
The severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, epidemic has shown that the world is susceptible to "devastating pandemics" and that "worldwide cooperation" is needed to fight diseases such as HIV/AIDS, an Arizona Daily Star editorial says. Therefore, Congress should support Rep. Henry Hyde's (R-Ill.) international AIDS bill (HR 1298), including the allocation of money to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Daily Star states (Arizona Daily Star, 4/21). The House International Relations Committee on April 2 approved Hyde's bill, which would authorize $15 billion over five years to fight international AIDS. The bill would allocate $3 billion a year for five years for international HIV/AIDS programs, with up to $1 billion in fiscal year 2004 going to the Global Fund (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 4/18). According to the editorial, the potential for $1 billion in funding for the Global Fund represents an increase from the $200 million per year proposed under President Bush's AIDS initiative. Arizona Rep. Jim Kolbe (R), chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Relations, supports Hyde's proposed allocation to the fund and is seeking to ensure the fund's "transparency and accountability," according to the Star. Kolbe has met with Global Fund staff and will hold a hearing on the fund in May, the editorial says. The editorial states that "the least Congress should allocate is the full $1 billion in the Hyde bill," concluding, "It would be the moral thing to do ... [a]nd it would go far in furthering the country's image as a compassionate member of the world community" (Arizona Daily Star, 4/21).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.