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Ryan White
changes could hamper HIV care in California

Ryan White
changes could hamper HIV care in California

Changes in counting of HIV cases could result in Ryan White cuts to California cities.

If Congress passes new provisions in the Ryan White CARE Act that alter how HIV cases are counted by the federal government, nine metropolitan areas in California could lose as much as $19 million in funding, The Sacramento Bee reports. Currently, federal AIDS funds are allocated based on the number of AIDS patients in a region, but a new bill being considered by Congress changes that to focus on the number of HIV cases in each state.

AIDS cases in metropolitan areas also are currently counted both as part of a city total and as part of a state total for separate funding streams. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has proposed eliminating the "double counting" system, which could result in a cut of 62% in the $31 million allocated to nine California metro areas.

AIDS advocates worry that because California provides expensive, state-of-the-art care for HIV patients, funding cuts could diminish such care in major cities such as San Francisco and Los Angeles. Funding cuts also could lead to scaled-back or even eliminated support programs, including transportation services, counseling, and other nonmedical programs, AIDS advocates say. (Advocate.com)

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