The Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine will receive $138 million in federal funds that will support the work of the newly created Center for International Health, Education and Biosecurity to build programs in Africa to combat HIV/AIDS.
From The Baltimore Sun,
The money will enable the Baltimore-based institute to continue working in countries that persistently suffer from high rates of HIV infections. The goal is to stem new infections and to find and treat more people already infected so the virus becomes more of a chronic condition, much like it is in the United States, rather than a death sentence.
About 70 percent of the 36.7 million people worldwide living with HIV last year live in sub-Saharan Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Of the 1.1 million deaths related to the disease, 800,000 were in Africa.
The money comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR, and is aimed at building programs in Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania and Zambia. It will be doled out to six programs over five years.
It adds to hundreds of millions of dollars in government funding the university and the virology institute have been granted over more than a decade from various federal agencies through PEPFAR, a program initiated by President George W. Bush to focus more resources on HIV in Africa. President Barack Obama continued the program.
The Institute has been awarded about $926 million under PEPFAR since 2004.
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