GREENWICH, Conn. — U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, D-4th District, introduced a bill Thursday that would set aside $100 million over the next five years toward research for an HIV/AIDS cure. Many experts believe the investment would work to end the epidemic that costs the government more than $27 billion a year, according to the official website for Himes, a Greenwich Democrat.
"After slow but important progress in the face of a deadly and terrible disease, a cure is finally within reach," Himes said in a statement. "This bill provides the medical research community with the resources it needs to find that cure so that we can finally put an end to this worldwide epidemic."
The investment would fund a research program within the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program managed by the Department of Defense. The department would work closely with academic researchers and nonprofit organizations to create a group of scientists and advocates to review cure proposals.
About 34 million people were living with HIV/AIDS worldwide in 2010, including 1.2 million Americans.
In addition to reducing the cost of HIV/AIDS on the government, the bill would also benefit infected people, who spend more than $360,000 each on treatment over a lifetime.