Chennai: As part of its “ongoing and strong commitment to India” in the fight against AIDS, the US would double the quantum of grants to the country, a top official of the US Department of Health and Human Services said today.
“Congress is being asked to double the amount that would be spent on funding India and other countries because the number of cases of HIV is increasing,” Mike Leavitt, Secretary, HSS, told reporters after visiting the Government Hospital for Thoracic Medicine at Tambaram Sanatorium here.
“Our commitment to India and the Union Ministry of Health is ongoing and strong. As part of President George W Bush’s AIDS initiative, US intends to double the money to help India and our other friends to sustain what we are doing, and be helpful in the centres which are carrying out these efforts,” Leavitt said.
However, he declined to divulge any details on the quantum of the grant. Lauding the hospital, one of the principal beneficiaries of the Indo-US collaborative programme on HIV/AIDS, for its services, Leavitt said Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss intended to replicate the model in other states.
He said that testing centre and clinical delivery system matched global standards and that the US-based Centre for Disease Control, National Institute of Health and the HSS were happy to be part of its development.