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January 12, 2009

Looking Back on Bush’s Fight Against AIDS

The Associated Press (AP) on January 11 examined George W. Bush’s AIDS legacy in Africa, where his President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has helped provide antiretroviral treatment to more than 2 million people living with the virus.

Bush launched the $15 billion initiative in 2003 to fight AIDS in 15 countries—12 of which are in Africa, a region that accounts for more than half the world’s estimated 33 million HIV cases. Last year, Congress passed legislation tripling PEPFAR’s budget to $48 billion over the next five years, a move that both Republicans and Democrats supported.

“It’s the largest international health initiative in history for a single disease,” PEPFAR ambassador and U.S. global AIDS coordinator Mark Dybul told the AP. “In any other circumstances, [Bush] would be getting a Nobel prize.”

According to a recent Gallup poll, most Americans gave Bush positive ratings for PEPFAR, despite giving him largely negative feedback for the war on global terrorism and the flagging domestic economy, United Press International reports.

Search: Bush, PEPFAR, Africa, Gallup

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