Despite an ongoing budget crisis in Texas, state lawmakers are expected to allocate more tax money to the state's AIDS Drug Assistance Program, which would keep the program from implementing a waiting list or to curtail access to certain medications, the Austin-American Statesman reports. The legislature is expected to increase spending for the program by between $20 million and $28 million over the next two years. However, the state Department of Health has devised a back-up plan in case the funding doesn't come through or if it proves inadequate to meet the program's needs. Among the provisions of the back-up plan are raising patient co-pays for anti-HIV medications, creating an enrollment cap for the program, and tightening financial eligibility requirements.
Members of the AIDS Coalition of Texas said they are pleased that lawmakers seem poised to provide more money for the ADAP but noted that they will continue to lobby elected officials to continue to increase funding in the coming years to avoid limiting access to low-cost anti-HIV drugs.