PEPFAR One of Bush Administration’s ‘More Positive Legacies,’ Editorial Says
"One of the more positive legacies of the Bush administration is the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief," a Washington Post editorial says. According to the editorial, PEPFAR -- "the brainchild of President George W. Bush in 2003" -- is an "unprecedented multiyear and multibillion-dollar commitment by the United States to combat the epidemic's deadly march across Africa." According to the editorial, a recent study found that PEPFAR prevented more than one million deaths on the African continent. It says that PEPFAR's spent $18.8 billion between fiscal years 2003 and 2008 on the program's 15 focus countries -- 12 of which are in Africa, adding that Bush and Congress last year "approved another $48 billion over the next five years to fight HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria."
The study authors "also delivered a piece of sobering news: PEPFAR's success in lowering the AIDS death rate hasn't translated to a similar success in lowering" prevalence, the editorial says, adding, "But, as the report notes, 'A reduction in prevalence that may be attributable to PEPFAR would be a consequential accomplishment for the next five years of PEPFAR.'" It concludes, "True. Ultimately, the key to ending the epidemic is reducing the number of people who become HIV-positive" (Washington Post, 4/9).