HHS Should Act Quickly To End Travel Restrictions for HIV-Positive People, Editorial SaysHHS should take action "soon to end a de facto form of discrimination" by rewriting its rules prohibiting HIV-positive people from visiting the U.S., a Washington Post editorial says, adding that the continuation of the policy "puts the United States in the company of countries such as Libya, Saudi Arabia and Sudan." According to the Post, Congress recently lifted a ban on allowing foreign visitors and immigrants living with HIV/AIDS into the country as part of the reauthorization of the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, but the ban will not be lifted "in practice" unless HHS rewrites its rules on the issue.
"President Bush's commitment to taking the fight against HIV/AIDS to Africa has earned the United States immeasurable goodwill abroad," the Post says, adding that PEPFAR is "one of the hallmark achievements" of the Bush administration. "But much of this goodwill is undone by the ban," the editorial says, concluding, "HHS officials have said that changing the rule is a 'time-consuming process' but that they're working to revise it before the next administration takes office. We hope this isn't just rhetoric and that HHS acts soon" (Washington Post, 9/26). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.