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Federal Funding for HIV/AIDS
Funding for Ryan White, which is the Federal program that supplies all the money for HIV/AIDS programs throughout the USA, is NOT getting funded as needed. Congress is not meeting the funding needs for AIDS programs. Money for critical needs such as care, housing, ADAP and other services will not be enough. Although they are offering increases, the increases are not what we need. The AIDS Drug assistance Programs (ADAP) is funded by Ryan White and provides money to the states that supports patient's accessing HIV medications through ADAP. All states including NY are facing shortfalls in funding that will require cutbacks. In some cases, some states will be forced to close their programs to new clients. Other severe restrictions may be put into place.
You can call your Congressperson or NY Senator to voice your concerns and needs. The US House and Senate are now considering the funding Bill that will allocate money to HIV/AIDS programs (Labor/HHS appropriations bill # S.1536). This Bill will be discussed on the Senate Floor by next week. It is urgent to call your Senator now.
NY Senators-
Hillary Clinton
Tel # 202 224-4451
Health Policy Aide- Megan Thompson
Charles Schumer
Tel # 202 224-6542
Health Policy Aide- Christine Parker
You can reach your U.S. Senators by calling the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121 or toll-free at 1-800-648-3516 and asking to be transferred to their offices.
When you call your Senator or Congressperson use this message:
"The Senate Appropriations Committee's numbers, while appreciated, are inadequate to meet growing demand. People living with HIV and AIDS need Senator_____________ to do everything in his/her power to ensure that the full Senate approves the highest possible funding for all HIV/AIDS programs."
And feel free to express your personal needs and concerns about funding for HIV and Hepatitis C care and access to treatment. When you call Schumer and Clinton, you can mention NATAP, as we recently met with the Health Policy Aides (Thompson and Parker) in these Senator's offices to talk about these issues. If you are from Florida we recently met with Jocelyn Moore in Senator Bob Graham's office.
See additional key issues to talk about with at the end of this letter.
Status Report New York State AIDS Drug Assistance Program
• NYS ADAP provides access to viral HIV/AIDS medications to over 21,000 uninsured and underinsured persons living with HIV/AIDS each year.
• NYS ADAP has a $7 million structural deficit (projected annual expenditures exceed annual revenues) for Fiscal Year 2001/02 due to an inadequate increase in Federal funding.
• The structural deficit is currently being addressed by a moratorium on new drugs and services (initiated in November 2000) and transferring savings from other HIV/AIDS programs.
• NYS continues to experience a growth in enrollment of more than 4,500 new clients per year, and will increase this rate by using $1.4 million to target new outreach efforts to minority communities.
• In the next year, there will be a need to cover new FDA approved HIV antiretrovirals, the new standard of care for hepatitis C treatment, and to address emerging HIV related conditions such as osteopenia/osteoporosis.
• NYS ADAP has had consistent $20 million increases in expenditures each year of the previous three years and expects at least the same growth rate for FY 2002/03.
• All of the Ryan White CARE Act Title I EMAs (NYC, Lower Hudson, Long Island and Dutchess County) have committed to increasing their contribution to NYS ADAP by 25% in FY 2002/03. However, these increases ($5 million) and available savings will not be sufficient to resolve the structural deficit and keep pace with a $20 million annual growth in FY 2002/03.
• NYS ADAP requires its share (18%) of a minimum national increase of $120 million in the ADAP Supplemental appropriation, in order to avoid a major structural deficit in FY 2002/03 that would require program restrictions.
You can call your Congressman or woman and Senator and express your concerns. When you call you should ask to speak with the Health Policy Aide.
NY Senators are:
Hillary Clinton
Tel # 202 224-4451
Health Policy Aide- Megan Thompson
Charles Schumer
Tel # 202 224-6542
Health Policy Aide- Christine Parker
Key points to make are:
• You and others rely on ADAP funding to access your HIV medications
• You are concerned about adequate funding for care, testing and treatment for Hepatitis C medications. Also, coverage for diagnostic testing (biopsy, genotype testing, HCV viral load) is important. ADAP, Medicaid, and other public reimbursement programs MUST provide adequate care for Hepatitis C and HCV/HIV coinfection
• Funding for this year is inadequate. The ADAP Working Group has requested an additional $120 million for 2002 for all state ADAPs to cover additional expenses and coverage on top of what ADAPs were receiving for 2001. The Bush Administration and Congress are only offering $20-60 million. Because of the anticipated funding shortfalls, NY and many other states will not be able to offer services and medications to many individuals. NY is in financial difficulties but other states are in worse shape. Some of their new restrictions due to this shortage in money is that they will have to close access to their programs for new patients.
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