Under current US immigration law, a person with HIV is barred from entry into the United States and barred from becoming a permanent resident.  The U.S. is one of thirteen countries that has such a harsh restriction on the admission of persons with HIV.  The other countries include: Armenia, Brunei, China, Iraq, Qatar, South Korea, Libya, Moldova, Oman, Russia, and Sudan.

Normally the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) makes a determination as to whether a certain disease is communicable and a danger to the public’s health.  Unfortunately, the United States’ immigration laws specifically lists HIV as a communicable disease that does not allow entry.  This section of the U.S. immigration does not specifically mention any other disease.

A bill pending before Congress would strike HIV from being specifically mentioned under the immigration law.  Instead, the determination would rightfully be made by HHS.  The bill has a good chance of becoming law this year.  It should be carefully watched and supported.

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