(CBS News) President Barack Obama signed a bill into law that will allow researchers to look into the benefits of transplanting organs between HIV-positive patients.

The HOPE Act, which was signed on Thursday, directs the federal health department to develop and institute standards for conducting such research. It also permits the health secretary to allow such transplants if the research results warrant a change. The safety of the organ transplant process also must be protected.

Obama says the HOPE Act is an important step because it will help improve medical care for people living with HIV.

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