April 24, 2019 – Eliminating HIV
Anchor lead: Would actual elimination of HIV be possible? Elizabeth Tracey reports
HIV infection can be eliminated in the US. That lofty goal was recently put forward by the Trump administration, and Joseph Cofrancesco, an HIV expert at Johns Hopkins, is cautiously optimistic.
Cofrancesco: I think it is absolutely feasible to eliminate transmission of HIV in the US and potentially in the world. In order to do that everyone has to be tested, those who are tested have to be able to be properly treated, so that means the stigma which still exists has to be addressed, the healthcare systems have to be able to not only give meds and make the meds affordable, but engage them in meaningful ways so they can stay controlled on their meds. Because U=U. undetectable equals uninfectious. :35
Cofrancesco notes that just eliminating HIV in the US won’t be permanent unless efforts are undertaken worldwide to employ the same measures, so he calls on the administration to keep up with global humanitarian commitments. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.