House-Senate Spending Bill Compromise Reportedly Includes $1.4B for International AIDS, $34M for International Family Planning
A House-Senate compromise on the $396 billion omnibus appropriations bill reportedly includes funds to fight AIDS internationally and to support United Nations Population Fund international family planning efforts, the Associated Press reports. According to unnamed lobbyists and congressional aides, the bill includes $1.4 billion in aid for international AIDS programs, including $100 million of an $180 million amendment proposed by Sens. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) and Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) (Fram, Associated Press, 2/12). The $180 million amendment, which the Senate approved three weeks ago, would have allocated $100 million to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, as well as $80 million to the U.S. Agency for International Development and the CDC (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 1/24). The spending package also includes $34 million for UNFPA international family planning programs, but the money is "unlikely to be spent" because President Bush has the authority to withhold funds, as he did last year, according to the Associated Press. Bush last year withheld the funds over reports that UNFPA "tolerates coerced abortions in China," a claim that the agency denies. Despite continuing dissent over other measures, lawmakers hope to complete the bill by the end of the week (Associated Press, 2/12).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.