After Donald Trump recently signed a global gag rule preventing U.S. money from funding international health organizations that provide abortions, various organizations have now shared that it will also have a drastic impact on HIV well.
For the record, United States money has never gone to Planned Parenthood or any other abortion-related services. But as PAI reports, thanks to the gag order, clinics in Kenya and Ethiopia will risk getting shutdown — most of them provided access to not only contraceptives, but they are one of the only places people can get educated on HIV.
Unlike previous gag orders, this one expands beyond abortion. It now includes health funding.
Presidents like George W. Bush implemented similar gag orders, but in that case it exempted the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, an initiative to combat HIV/AIDS in all nations. This order has no such exemption.
As a result of the gag order, organizations around the world have no choice to offer bad or mismanaged health care, otherwise they risk losing funding.
The consequences will be detrimental to the progress of HIV education and prevention. Additionaly, services providing antiretroviral therapies to those in need will have to comply to the gag rule, thus minimizing care.
“We are on a path to end the epidemic,” Dr. Amesh A. Adalja, a board-certified infectious disease physician at the University of Pittsburgh said to SELF. “This gag rule has the potential to severely curtail the movement forward—it’s bad public policy that can have a serious impact on the lives of people.”