Since the early years of the AIDS epidemic, talk of a cure became almost taboo. In the past few years, advances in prevention and treatment became increasingly effective. Now some researchers say it's time to shift focus and resources to finding a cure. So why now, what's changed, and how close are we? If you have questions about the search for a cure for HIV/AIDS, give us a call: 800-989-8255. Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org. You can join the conversation on our website as well. That's at npr.org.
During the 1980s, musician Elton John watched many of his friends and loved ones suffer and die from HIV and AIDS. Lost in a drug-fueled haze, he says, he did nothing to help people with the disease.
Then he met Ryan White, a teenage hemophiliac who was shunned by his community after contracting HIV. Ryan's struggle and eventual death marked a turning point for John. He entered rehab and became a vocal advocate for AIDS research, prevention and treatment, creating the Elton John AIDS Foundation.