President Barack Obama lauded “extraordinary" progress towards eradicating HIV/AIDS Monday and promised further U.S. investment to find a cure for the disease.
“For many, with testing and access to the right treatment, the disease that was once a death sentence now comes with a good chance of a healthy and productive life,” Obama said at an event marking World AIDS Day, which was on December 1.
“We’re making progress, but we are all here today because we know how much work remains to be done,” Obama said.
Obama announced that $100 million in funding will be redirected to a National Institutes of Health program to seek a cure for AIDS.
"The United States of America will remain the global leader in the fight against HIV and AIDS," he pledged, adding that "I believe we are going to win this fight."
And he added a plug for his beleaguered health care legislation, noting that – under the law – “no American will be again denied health care coverage because of their HIV status.”
Secretary of State John Kerry and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius also spoke at the event.
An estimated 35 million people live with HIV/AIDS globally, according to the World Health Organization. In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control estimates that more than one million people are living with HIV, and almost 20 percent are unaware of the infection.
This year’s theme for World AIDS Day is “Shared Responsibility: Strengthening Results for an AIDS-Free Generation.”