Bush's budget shifts AIDS funds from other health initiatives
Although President Bush has pledged $10 billion in new spending and a total of $15 billion over the next five years for international HIV/AIDS efforts, a sizable portion of the new money is actually being diverted from other international health initiatives, according to a budget analysis by The Boston Globe. Funds for fighting infectious diseases other than HIV/AIDS would be cut from $185 million to $104.4 million in Bush's 2004 budget proposal, and programs to promote maternal and child health would receive $384.6 million, down from an initially proposed amount of $495 million. Those cuts amount to about 20% of the new AIDS spending promised by Bush for 2004.
"Simply shifting money into AIDS is at very best a neutral shift, or a relabeling of money, which is contrary to the intent of the president to provide additional funding," said Nils Daulaire, head of the Global Health Council and a former USAID official. Bush administration officials did not return calls for comment.