Congress Must Provide More Than Bush’s FY 2007 Request for Ryan White CARE Act Funding, Editorial Says
Congress "must do better" than President Bush's fiscal year 2007 budget proposal, which would provide "essentially flat funding" for the Ryan White CARE Act, a Detroit Free Press editorial says (Detroit Free Press, 2/11). The CARE Act provides funding for care and services to HIV-positive people in the U.S. (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 2/3). Bush has requested approximately $2.16 billion in CARE Act funding for FY 2007, an increase of $95 million from FY 2006 (FY 2007 HHS Budget in Brief, 2/13). About $70 million of the $95 million increase would go toward reducing AIDS Drug Assistance Program waiting lists and providing newly diagnosed people with access to drugs. ADAPs are federal- and state-funded programs that provide HIV/AIDS-related medications to low-income, uninsured and underinsured HIV-positive individuals. The National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors this month released the latest ADAP Watch, which shows that 954 HIV-positive people were on waiting lists in 10 states as of Jan. 18 (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 2/7). According to the editorial, ADAP programs would need about $200 million more than Bush's proposal would provide to end all state waiting lists. Although Bush's plan "does some good things," it "falls far short of meeting the health crisis posed by AIDS," the editorial says, concluding, "Those on the front lines of the battle against AIDS are fighting over how to split a woefully inadequate pot. They must convince Congress that containing this disease and treating those who already have it depend on a healthy increase in funding for the Ryan White CARE Act" (Detroit Free Press, 2/11).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.