We commend the U.S. Congress for passing the PEPFAR Stewardship and Oversight Act of 2013, reaffirming its strong commitment to this historic global health program. The Act, a bi-partisan and bi-cameral effort, extends critical authorities and strengthens oversight of the landmark 2003 legislation establishing the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
A mere decade ago, AIDS was a death sentence in Africa. It threatened the very foundation of societies – creating millions of orphans, stalling economic development, and leaving countries stuck in poverty. Today, the picture has changed dramatically, with millions of lives being saved and people with HIV being empowered to lead long and productive lives.
Moreover, landmark scientific advances coupled with success in implementing effective programs have put an AIDS-free generation in sight. We are also maximizing our impact through unprecedented coordination with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, partner countries, the private sector, faith-based organizations, and civil society to invest our respective resources in the most complementary and synergistic manner possible.
The passage of the PEPFAR Stewardship and Oversight Act demonstrates the United States’ sustained commitment to fighting this deadly disease, but the U.S. cannot do it alone. Achieving an AIDS-free generation is a shared responsibility. We are profoundly grateful to Congress for its leadership in ensuring our path and our purpose in the global fight remains strong.
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