‘Alarming Complacency’ About HIV/AIDS in U.S., Editorial Says
"When it comes to fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States, there is an alarming complacency among Americans," a Washington Post editorial says. It adds, "Perhaps it's the success of antiretroviral drug treatments. In the eyes of many, those drugs have transformed the disease from one with no cure to a manageable ailment." It might be the "view that AIDS is more of a worry in Africa or Southeast Asia," the editorial says, adding, "But it's not just happening 'over there.' And the Obama administration took a first step last week to remind people that it's happening right here, right now."
The "Act Against AIDS" initiative is a "five-year endeavor ... with the mission to snap us out of our somnolence as the epidemic rages around us," according to the editorial. It adds, "We applaud the administration for bringing together 14 African-American civic organizations to help highlight the importance of testing and treatment among their memberships." However, "more needs to be done," and several people "have called for a domestic version of the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, which has been successful in sub-Saharan Africa," the editorial says. President Obama has "charged" Jeffrey Crowley, director of the Office of National AIDS Policy, to "craft a national AIDS strategy over the next year with three goals: lowering the rate of HIV infections, increasing the number of people in care and reducing disparities in care," the editorial says, concluding, "For the sake of the nation, we hope the administration maintains its focus on this domestic challenge" (Washington Post, 4/14).