Former President Clinton Tells Syracuse University Graduates That U.S. Should Lead Fight Against Infectious Diseases
Former President Bill Clinton on Sunday told graduating students at Syracuse University that the United States should lead the global fight against poverty and infectious diseases, including HIV/AIDS, through collaborative efforts with other countries, the New York Times reports. In a commencement address, Clinton praised the Bush administration for its support of a bill (HR 1298) that would increase funding for international HIV/AIDS programs, according to the Times (New York Times, 5/12). The House earlier this month approved the bill, sponsored by Rep. Henry Hyde (R-Ill.), which would authorize $15 billion over five years to fight AIDS in Africa and the Caribbean. The bill would authorize $3 billion a year for five years to international HIV/AIDS programs, with up to $1 billion in fiscal year 2004 going to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The Senate is expected to discuss the bill this week (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 5/9). Clinton said that he hopes that more money will go to the Global Fund and that the increased funding will not come at the expense of other foreign aid programs, according to the Times. The key to fighting infectious diseases is international cooperation, Clinton said, according to the Times. "We should have a strong military; sometimes we have to use it," Clinton said, adding, "But over the long run, the trend line will require us to make a safer world by cooperating with others" (New York Times, 5/12). After leaving office in January 2001, Clinton founded the William J. Clinton Presidential Foundation HIV/AIDS Initiative, which brings together experts to work in the Caribbean and Africa to expand access to antiretroviral treatment (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 4/8).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.