The American Medical Association and the war on AIDS.
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The American Medical Association and the war on AIDS.

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  • English

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      Public Health Rep
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      Since the identification of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in 1981 as a distinct disease entity, the number of AIDS cases has steadily increased in the United States and throughout the world. Although the primary etiologic agent of AIDS, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), has been identified and the major means by which the virus is transmitted--sexual contact, use of contaminated needles by IV drug abusers, perinatally, and through blood or blood products--are also known, no vaccines or specific therapies to combat the disease are available as yet. The AIDS crisis underscores the absolute necessity for the continuing support of the biomedical research enterprise in its many forms and settings and calls for an all-out effort in educating the world community about the means of preventing and controlling the disease. The American Medical Association (AMA) has accepted the challenge to be in the forefront of this war on AIDS. In two recent reports adopted by its House of Delegates, the AMA has urged that a judicious balance be established between the well-being of HIV-positive patients and the protection of the public health. Education is identified as the major weapon currently available against the spread of this disease, and physicians are urged to assume the leadership role in educating themselves, their patients, and the public. In proposing 17 recommendations for physician, governmental, community, and public involvement and presenting an aggressive action agenda for the future, the AMA emphasizes the need for concerted and cooperative efforts by all members of society in the fight against AIDS.
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