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TAGline 2017

NEWS ON THE FIGHT TO END HIV/AIDS, VIRAL HEPATITIS, AND TUBERCULOSIS

TAGline Fall 2017

EVERYBODY IN, NOBODY OUT

Arguments favoring universal health care (UHC) are easy. Achieving political consensus as to the best strategy to achieve this is considerably more vexing. This is particularly true in the U.S., where the Affordable Care Act (ACA) patchwork of legislation and regulations has faced a barrage of executive and legislative attacks since the beginning of the year. And although the ACA and expansion of Medicaid in 32 states represents the closest the U.S. has come to ensuring UHC for its citizenry, it continues to fall short for millions of Americans, meaning that it must be either repaired or replaced with an entirely new system that ensures equitable access to care. 

In the Fall 2017 issue of TAGline, we explore the political feasibility and sustainability of UHC in the U.S. UHC is, first and foremost, a human right. However, it will require robust advocacy to galvanize bipartisan support for guaranteed coverage and to rein in the high cost of health care and prescription drugs. But the potential merits are clear, notably in efforts to lower HIV incidence and end HIV/AIDS as an epidemic in the U.S. once and for all.

In this issue of TAGline:

TAGline Spring 2017

A LUTA CONTINUA!

With every major election, particularly one that secures or fortifies Republican control of the White House, Senate, or House of Representatives, a certain amount of worry and strategy realignment is to be expected from public health activists and civil society. Following one of the biggest upsets in political history, in which Donald Trump rode a wave of populist and nationalist sentiments to become the 45th president of the United States and all but guaranteed a right-wing trifecta, the concern among health justice leaders has been unprecedented.

And rightfully so. Anxieties regarding government underinvestment in public health—basic and clinical research, international aid, domestic healthcare infrastructure, and various federally funded programs needed to support health outcomes—are heightened once again. In addition, we must now contend with executive and legislative branches bent on scaling back statutes and regulations that are key to human wellness and survival on the basis of, in no small part, willful disregard for science and evidence-based policy making.

Progress made in the arenas of HIV, tuberculosis (TB), and hepatitis C virus (HCV) over the past several years has been significant, to the point at which strategies to end all three epidemics have not only been envisioned, but actualized. But these gains are incredibly fragile and will diminish swiftly in the absence of federal nurturing and support.

TAG remains committed to the capacity building, coalition strengthening, and direct advocacy required to maintain forward momentum in a federal political climate that isn’t merely indifferent to public health, but is ultimately hostile to its efforts and the communities that it benefits.

In the April 2017 issue of TAGline, we chart the course ahead and touch on some of our overarching priorities in the coming months and years:

We remain in solidarity with our allies who have long fought battles to secure funding for basic and clinical research, reverse stigmatizing and discriminatory policies, stare down pharmaceutical industry greed, and push for programs to ensure equitable access to treatment and care. Although the challenges now go broader and deeper than ever before, we stand stronger than ever in a fight that has yielded monumental victories in the past and will continue to do so in the future. A luta continua, a vitória é certa.