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April 21, 1993

Social Catastrophe: Orphaned by AIDS-Reply

JAMA. 1993;269(15):1942. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500150050021

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In Reply.  —We commend the Families' and Children's AIDS Network in Chicago, Ill, for its foresight in addressing the needs of surviving children and new guardians. In New York, NY, the Child Welfare Administration's Early Permanency Planning Project has a similar goal: to identify foster parents for children who will survive their mother's death and to establish close relationships while the mother is still alive. Local efforts like the Second Family Program are urgently needed, in addition to state and federal initiatives.We also support Dr Clever's call for effective HIV prevention programs for women. Nevertheless, even if such programs were to be implemented and to reduce transmission rates significantly, the impact on the numbers of motherless children and teenagers in our study would be minimal. Most of the children we describe already have HIV-infected mothers. We believe that the growing numbers of these youth and their unmet needs warrant