Washington, DC – President Bush today signed into law the Tom Lantos and Henry J. Hyde United States Global Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Reauthorization Act (H.R. 5501) sponsored by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Howard L. Berman (D-CA). The five-year extension of the landmark U.S. effort to fight HIV/AIDS around the world authorizes $48 billion for prevention, treatment and care where they are most needed, and expands the program substantially to reach millions of people, primarily in Africa.
“With this step, the United States demonstrates an abiding commitment to leadership in tackling the HIV/AIDS pandemic,” Berman said. “It provides the resources to reach clear and achievable goals in combating diseases that debilitate people and communities around the world. The bipartisan way in which Congress brought this bill to the White House speedily and with serious consideration is a tribute to what we can achieve in foreign policy when the cause is right and all parties work together in good will.”
The House Foreign Affairs Committee approved the legislation in late February; it passed the House in early April and, after amendment in the Senate, received final House approval last week. The bill contains provisions that move the global HIV/AIDS program beyond the “emergency” phase of implementation under the President’s Emergency Program for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and seeks to make the initiatives that it supports more sustainable over the long term. It dramatically boosts HIV/AIDS programming related to women and girls; strengthens health systems in countries hard-hit by the virus that causes AIDS; authorizes HIV/AIDS programs to include linkages to food and nutrition, education and health care programs; and increases U.S. contributions to the Global Fund for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.