Washington, D.C.'s health director this week announced a new system at the district's health department for issuing reimbursements to area AIDS clinics, which in the past had gone weeks or months without getting paid, The Washington Post reports. The new system calls for all reimbursements to be reviewed and processed within 30 days. Payments also will be issued prospectively each quarter so that AIDS clinics will not be forced to run deficits or juggle their finances while waiting for district funds.
The district health department and the housing agency of Prince George's County, Md., currently owe D.C.-based Whitman-Walker Clinic more than $700,000. The AIDS service organization in mid May was unable to meet its payroll for the first time in its history. The department also owes the Carl Vogel Center, which provides HIV case management services, nearly $145,000. That agency has had to cut staff and services and had been considering temporarily closing due to financial shortfalls.