New CDC HIV/AIDS Prevention Guidelines Should Have Been Accompanied By Increased Federal Funding, Boston Globe Editorial Says
The CDC's recently released HIV/AIDS prevention guidelines calling for "much more routine" HIV testing is "welcome" and "on target," but the guidelines would be even more welcome if they were accompanied by increased federal funding for HIV testing, a Boston Globe editorial says (Boston Globe, 4/28). The new guidelines released April 17 target an estimated 200,000 people who are HIV-positive but do not know they carry the virus. The CDC is urging local health authorities to make widespread use of a rapid HIV test, approved by the FDA in November 2002 and approved for expanded availability by HHS in February. The CDC wants to offer the test in all federally funded clinics, as well as in places where there are people who may not have access to routine medical care, such as homeless shelters, jails and substance abuse treatment centers (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 4/23). But the CDC's "sound proposal" for increased testing "comes with no new proposals for reimbursement," the editorial continues. According to the Globe, funding for HIV/AIDS prevention would "surely be more urgent if the disease were still taking the horrific toll on patients that it did 10 years ago." The editorial concludes, "The CDC initiative is welcome, but it would be more so if the federal government backed it with funds to replace depleted state contributions" (Boston Globe, 4/28).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.