New Democrat health critic Mike Farnworth released the following statement in recognition of World AIDS Day:
“Much has changed since the first World AIDS Day was marked in 1988. Over the last 24 years, great strides have been made to reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS and to improve the lives of those who have contracted it.
“This has come about through the courage of individuals with HIV/AIDS, the perseverance of researchers and hard work of health care staff. Continued progress can only be made if governments commit to continuing to support innovative treatments and exploring initiatives aimed at reducing the spread of the virus, such as the Seek and Treat for Optimal Prevention of HIV/AIDS program.
“It's heartening to see the Seek and Treat for Optimal Prevention of HIV/AIDS program expand to cover the entire province, as the government announced Friday. This program exemplifies the kind of innovative and effective strategies to slow HIV transmission that have made British Columbian organizations such as the Dr. Peter Foundation and the B.C. Centre for Excellence for HIV-AIDS world leaders in treating the virus and fighting its spread.
“Hopefully with the continued support of governments and the work of AIDS researchers all over the world, the dream of an HIV free generation will not be long in becoming a reality.”