180 Groups Send Letter to President Bush Calling for $283M in New Federal Funding for ADAPs
One hundred and eighty groups from 29 states yesterday sent a letter to President Bush asking that he request $283 million in new federal funding for AIDS Drug Assistance Programs in fiscal year 2004, according to an AIDS Treatment Data Network release. Congress so far has appropriated between 10% and 15% of that amount (ATDN release, 7/31). According to a recent National ADAP Monitoring Project report, which was released in April and based on a survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the National Alliance for State and Territorial AIDS Directors and the AIDS Treatment Data Network, although the national ADAP budget increased by $86 million during FY 2000, the program is running out of money in an increasing number of states. ADAPs provide prescription drugs in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam for HIV-positive individuals who are uninsured and could otherwise not access such drugs. However, at least 10 states, including Georgia, Maine and Texas, have had to restrict access to antiretroviral drugs or cap program enrollments because of limited funding (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/9). The letter says that the "increase is needed to keep ADAPs stable through FY 2004," adding that the administration "must take as public a stand on domestic AIDS needs as it has on addressing the global AIDS crisis." The letter also calls for Bush to "support the highest possible funding for all programs funded by the Ryan White CARE Act to protect critical support and care services for people with HIV/AIDS." The letter concludes that the administration "must take bold steps in addressing this urgent need" (Letter text, 7/31). A list of the signing organizations is available online.This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.