WWR: Public Policy in the New Year, HIV Preventing AIDS, and Treatment Windows

By Jane Coaston | January 18, 2013

Elizabeth Glaser, founder and inspiration of EGPAF, meeting President and Mrs. Reagan.

EGPAF

This week, we’re learning about what to expect from HIV/AIDS public policy efforts in the United States in 2013, reading about new research into how to use the HIV virus to prevent AIDS, and thinking about the optimal time to begin treatment for HIV.

EGPAF – “2013 in Public Policy: Big Changes” As the 113th Congress enters office this month, Foundation Public Policy Officer Katie Coester wrote this rundown of what to expect for HIV/AIDS policy issues over the next few months. She notes that sequestration, the current fiscal climate, and shifting roles within the Obama Administration could put funding for HIV/AIDS in jeopardy.

Voice of America“Australian Researchers Use HIV to Prevent AIDS” Researchers at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research announced this week that they had discovered a way to use the HIV virus to prevent the development of full-blown AIDS. By modifying a protein in HIV, the researchers were able to prevent the HIV virus from replicating.

EGPAFA Success Story in Lesotho: Family Health Days” According to UNAIDS, Lesotho has the third highest HIV prevalence in the world - just fewer than one in four people in the country are living with HIV. The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation is working to combat the epidemic by offering family health days, where people living in remote areas can access HIV prevention, care, and treatment services.

AllAfrica.com“Uganda: The Struggle to Keep the Children Alive” Though Uganda reached 81 percent coverage of prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) services in 2009, that number has dropped dramatically. Now, fewer Ugandan women are getting tested or treated for HIV, and 25,000 babies are born with HIV every year. Ugandan health officials are concerned that the stigma against people living with HIV is contributing to the epidemic.

US News & World Report “Study Pinpoints Optimal Treatment Window for HIV” A study published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine indicates that the ideal time to begin antiretroviral therapy is within the first four month following infection. Those who began treatment within four months of infection were nearly twice as likely to experience restored normal T-cell counts, which are depleted by HIV.

Jane Coaston is Media Relations Coordinator for the Foundation, based in Washington, D.C.