San Francisco AIDS doctor reflects on 30 years of virus 

Diane Havlir, the professor of medicine at UC San Francisco, serves as chief of the AIDS program at San Francisco General Hospital. Sunday marked the 30th anniversary of the first AIDS cases reported to the nation via the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
What does it personally mean for you to have this day arrive? I have a profound sadness for those we have lost to AIDS. I marvel at the progress that we have made and lives we have saved. I am reminded that with 34 million persons living with HIV, there is much still much to be done to overcome this disease.
What is the biggest change in terms of AIDS/HIV diagnoses from the epidemic in the early ’80s to today? At the beginning, AIDS was a 100 percent fatal disease with life expectancy measured in months. Today, HIV is a treatable disease with life expectancy measured in decades.     

With 30 years of research, what are you most satisfied with in terms of AIDS/HIV treatment and education? My greatest satisfaction is knowing that life-saving HIV therapy has been offered to millions of people around the world.

When will we have a cure for the virus? It is impossible to know, but the science is advancing quickly and the will is there to find a cure.

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