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Los Angeles
County’s Ryan White grant cut by $1.9 million

Los Angeles
County’s Ryan White grant cut by $1.9 million

Federal AIDS funds to Los Angeles are cut by 5.2%.

The federal Ryan White AIDS grant to Los Angeles County for 2006 has been cut by $1.9 million, and federal HIV prevention funds to the county have been slashed by $400,000, reports AIDS Project Los Angeles. The county is set to receive $34.9 million in Ryan White funds for the year, down 5.2% from last year's funding level. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is allocating $12.8 million to the county for HIV prevention programs in 2006, down 2.9% from 2005.

More than 57,000 HIV-positive people live in Los Angeles County, about 5% of the nation's total HIV cases.

"Los Angeles is losing ground in the fight against AIDS," said APLA executive director Craig E. Thompson in a press statement. "We've lost 12% of our Ryan White funding since 2003. The only growth we've seen is in demand for services, the cost of providing care, and the county bureaucracy."

The county Office of AIDS Programs and Policy is working with the Commission on HIV and the county board of supervisors to streamline the office's allocation of federal AIDS dollars, including eliminating inefficiencies and making the funding process more transparent. APLA's Thompson also said the office must cut down the amount of money it spends internally, currently about 20% of the county's total AIDS budget.

Ryan White funds provide medical and dental care to low-income Los Angeles County HIVers, as well as such vital services as food banks, transportation, and mental health counseling. (The Advocate)

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