N.H. Governor Signs Bill Creating Legislative Oversight Committee for State HIV/AIDS Services
New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch (D) on Tuesday signed into law a bill (SB 171) creating a legislative committee to study how HIV/AIDS-related services are delivered in the state, Foster's Daily Democrat reports (Manning, Foster's Daily Democrat, 6/1). The committee will be made up of three state representatives and three state senators, who will be selected by the leaders of each chamber (SB 171 text, 6/2). According to state Sen. Iris Estabrook (D), who sponsored the measure, the purpose of the committee is to coordinate various state agencies and nongovernmental organizations to streamline HIV/AIDS-related programs and resources. Committee members also will be required to compare New Hampshire's delivery of services to that of the other five New England states, assess the care needs of HIV/AIDS patients and research possible improvements to services, according to the Daily Democrat. Estabrook said the not-for-profit group AIDS Response Seacoast brought the matter to her attention by pointing out that New Hampshire might lose some federal HIV/AIDS funding after the reauthorization of the Ryan White CARE Act. "The best thing to do is to get everybody together and find out where we are," Estabrook said, adding, "We need to start talking about how we are going to handle a reduction in federal funding" (Foster's Daily Democrat, 6/1). The committee is required to have its first meeting before July 1 (SB 171 Text, 6/2). According to the state Department of Health & Human Services, there are 1,000 HIV-positive people living in New Hampshire (Foster's Daily Democrat, 6/1).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.