Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
Kansas City’s Repsonse to AIDS ‘Inspiring,’ Op-Ed Says
Kansas City's response to the HIV/AIDS crisis has been "persistent, inspiring and remarkable," Bill Tammeus, a member of the Kansas City Star's editorial board, writes in an opinion piece. Kansas City residents have faced the epidemic with "uncommon valor and commitment" and an assortment of public and private community-based responses, he says, citing the regional Planning Council, which oversees the disbursement of all federal AIDS funding in the area, and the Good Samaritan Project, which serves as the primary AIDS service organization in the region. However, the city's effort is "not without problems," Tammeus notes. More must be done to reach out to women and minorities, he says, adding that African-American churches need to "take a more active role" in prevention and testing awareness. More volunteers are needed at HIV/AIDS service organizations and "[m]ore attention must be paid" to substance use and mental health problems among people with HIV/AIDS, he states. In addition, more funding to help people who do not qualify for federal health assistance obtain adequate care and more affordable housing for people with the virus are needed. "Even if a cure for AIDS is found tomorrow -- unlikely
-- Kansas Citians will be caring for people with the disease for years. We've done well so far but cannot afford to lose our focus now," Tammeus concludes (Tammeus, Kansas City Star, 5/29).
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