December 1, 2014
Albany

Governor Cuomo Announces Significant Progress Towards Developing Blueprint to End HIV/AIDS Epidemic by 2020

TOP Governor Cuomo Announces Significant Progress...
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Issues Proclamation in Honor of World AIDS Day, Which Can Be Viewed Here


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today, World AIDS Day, announced that the statewide Ending the Epidemic Task Force he created earlier this year has made significant progress toward developing a blueprint to implement his three-point plan aimed at decreasing new cases of HIV to 750 per year by 2020. Made up of a diverse group of experts representing HIV/AIDS communities across New York State, the Task Force held its first meeting on October 14th and has since convened 14 listening forums that attracted over 400 participants and generated 294 recommendations. It is expected to finalize its work in January 2015 by which time it will have created a template for how to put the Governor’s three-point plant to end the epidemic into operation.

“Thirty years ago, New York was the epicenter of the AIDS crisis – but today science has advanced, the rate of infection has slowed, and New York is taking one step closer to a world without AIDS,” Governor Cuomo said. “Earlier this year we committed ourselves to becoming the first state to end the AIDS epidemic once and for all. As we observe World AIDS Day, we urge all New Yorkers to support those who continue to fight this disease and help prevent its transmission in the future.”

To date, more than 200,000 New Yorkers have been diagnosed with AIDS and more than 132,000 individuals in the State are living with HIV/AIDS.

Governor Cuomo’s three-point plant, for which he was recognized by the Elton John AIDS Foundation, includes:

  1. Identifying all persons with HIV in the State who remain undiagnosed and linking them to health care; 
  2. Linking and retaining persons diagnosed with HIV to health care and getting them on anti-HIV therapy to maximize the virus’s suppression so they remain healthy and prevent further transmission; and 
  3. Providing access to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for high-risk individuals to keep them HIV negative.

In observance of World AIDS Day this year, the New York State Department of Health will honor individuals from across the State for their commitment to reducing new HIV infections and contributing to the State’s plan to eradicate the AIDS epidemic here by 2020. To show support for those living with HIV/AIDS, New Yorkers of all ages are invited to the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany on December 1st from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and December 2nd from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“World AIDS Day promotes the education and awareness necessary to end the AIDS epidemic in New York by 2020,” said acting state health commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. “This year’s schedule of events will touch upon a wide range of topics, from discussing ways to attack AIDS at the community level to honoring those who have been instrumental in this fight for so many years.”

Additionally, sections of the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt, an international symbol of the AIDS pandemic and an educational tool to help prevent the spread of the disease, will be on display at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center. Quilt panel makers will dedicate their panels to loved ones living with the disease, and the NAMES Project New York Capital Region Chapter will accept new panels for the quilt to send to Atlanta and be added to the full AIDS Memorial Quilt, which is made up of more than 48,000 panels dedicated to more than 94,000 individuals.

For the full schedule of events and additional information on World AIDS Day activities, visit www.health.ny.gov/WAD.

For more information on the Ending the Epidemic Task Force visit:
http://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/aids/ending_the_epidemic/index.htm.

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Contact the Governor's Press Office
Contact the Governor's Press Office

NYC Press Office:  212.681.4640

Albany Press Office:  518.474.8418