New Jersey Lawmakers Corzine, Pallone Say India’s HIV/AIDS Epidemic ‘Bordering on Catastrophe,’ Call for U.S. Commitment
Sen. Jon Corzine (D-N.J.) and Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) last week after visiting India and areas affected by the December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami said the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the country is "bordering on catastrophe" and renewed their commitment to provide funding for HIV treatment and prevention in the country, PTI/newkarala.com reports. Corzine and Pallone -- who founded the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans -- attended a meeting about India's response to the epidemic at the U.S. embassy in New Delhi, with officials from CDC, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation also attending, according to PTI/newkarala.com. "Over five million people in India are infected with HIV, a pandemic which is bordering on catastrophe," Corzine said, adding, "India's HIV/AIDS crisis is felt beyond its own borders and is heartbreaking to those of Indian decent in New Jersey, the U.S. and throughout the world. This crisis requires an immediate infusion of international assistance, including increased surveillance and monitoring to create a better understanding of the scope of the global AIDS crisis and accelerated training of medical personnel." Pallone said that he "was heartened by the level of commitment" of the Indian Parliament to "stop the spread of this terrible disease." He added, "I am determined to parallel these efforts in the U.S. Congress" (PTI/newkarala.com, 1/22).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.