By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com August 11 2003 11:00 PM ET
Facing a possible AIDS Drug Assistance Program budget shortfall later this year or in subsequent years, the Texas Department of Health has developed a contingency plan that includes restricting access for new enrollees, the Houston Chronicle reports. The possible rule changes, all or some of which may be enacted as needed, include altering the medical criteria for program eligibility that would force some patients to wait longer for access to cheap anti-HIV medications; prohibiting program participants from subtracting the cost of anti-HIV drugs from their reported taxable income; decreasing the income eligibility requirement from $17,960 to just $11,225 per year; or completely closing the program to all new enrollees until budget deficits are eliminated. Health officials project that the program will have an $11 million deficit within two years.