Congress Passes $388B Spending Bill, Including $2.9B for HIV/AIDS, Other Diseases
Congress on Saturday passed a $388 billion fiscal year 2005 omnibus spending bill (HR 4818) that includes $2.9 billion to fight HIV/AIDS and other diseases, Reuters/MSN.com reports (Willard, Reuters/MSN.com, 11/20). The House and Senate voted 344-51 and 65-30, respectively, to approve the spending bill, which combines nine separate funding measures Congress had not yet approved (Hulse/Stolberg, New York Times, 11/21). The measure includes $2.3 billion to fight HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria internationally, a $690 million increase over FY 2004 spending (AFP/Taipei Times, 11/22). The $2.3 billion allocation is $99 million more than President Bush had requested for the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. The other $600 million in HIV/AIDS funding is part of the Labor-HHS portion of the bill, according to CQ Today (CQ Today, 11/21). Two congressional subcommittees responsible for allocating appropriations to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria on Thursday cut the U.S. pledge for FY 2005 to $350 million -- almost $200 million less than last year's donation (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 11/19). The omnibus bill also provides $1.5 billion for the Millennium Challenge Account -- a new program to encourage economic and political reforms in developing countries -- which is $1 billion less than Bush had requested (Reuters, 11/21).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.