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HHS Announces $9.6 Million in Grants to Provide Oral Health Care to People With HIV/AIDS
HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson yesterday announced 74 grants totalling $9.6 million for dental schools, hospitals and other institutions that provide oral health services to low-income, uninsured persons with HIV/AIDS, according to a Health Resources and Services Administrationrelease. The grants, which will go to institutions in 24 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, are part of the HIV/AIDS Dental Reimbursement Program of the Ryan White CARE Act, which has distributed $40 million to dental schools, hospitals and other institutions with oral health care programs for people with HIV/AIDS since its inception in 1997. Under the program, 29,000 people received oral health care services last year. "For someone with an immune system already weakened by HIV, poor oral hygiene can lead to minor infections progressing into major, even life-threatening, conditions. Regular and vigilant dental care -- along with good nutrition and other sensible lifestyle habits -- are essential to maintaining good health," Thompson said. A full list of the grant recipients is available online on the HRSA Web page (HRSA release, 9/17).
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