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Drug-maker will donate meds for US push to end HIV epidemic

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Posted at 5:31 PM, May 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-09 20:31:56-04

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Health and Human Services Department says a major drug-maker has agreed to donate medications that reduce the risk of HIV transmission for up to 200,000 people a year in support of the government's plan to end the epidemic in the U.S.

The pledge by California-based Gilead Sciences may last up to 11 years, said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. Gilead will donate its Truvada prevention pill until a second-generation version becomes available.

The Trump administration has set a goal of ending the HIV epidemic in the U.S. within 10 years.

Carl Schmid of the AIDS Institute called the donation "a really significant step," saying it will make the drug available to uninsured people. It lists for more than $20,000 per patient, per year.

HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.