President Proposes Increase in Minority AIDS Funding

Date: January 16, 2004
Source: Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)

2005 Budget Also Includes ADAP expansion
HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson announced today that President Bush's fiscal year 2005 budget request includes a 6 percent increase in the HIV/AIDS in Minority Communities Fund, as the Department continues its efforts to reduce health disparities. The budget also includes a 5 percent increase in the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) within the Ryan White Care Act.
The budget request includes $53 million for the HIV/AIDS in Minority Communities Fund, which supports innovative approaches to HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment in minority communities.
"Minority communities are disproportionately affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic," Secretary Thompson said. "We must be as flexible as possible in our treatment, research and prevention of HIV/AIDS to ensure that we are directing our energy and resources to the communities that are most seriously impacted by the disease."
Although African Americans make up only about 12 percent of the U.S. population, for example, they accounted for half of the new HIV infections reported in the United States in 2001. African-American women accounted for nearly 64 percent of HIV cases reported among women, and African-American men accounted for 43 percent of HIV cases reported among men.
Additionally, the budget request includes $784 million for the ADAP program, a 5 percent increase over 2004 and a 33 percent increase over 2001, which would allow ADAP to serve 100,000 people a month in fiscal year 2005 -- up from 93,800 in 2004. Under ADAP, grants for the purchase of medications are awarded to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The Ryan White Care Act program provides funding through cities, states, community health centers and other avenues to about 530,000 people each year who have little or no insurance. These services include medical care, access to lifesaving pharmaceuticals, dental care, outpatient mental health services, outpatient substance abuse treatment and home health care.
"We are building on our unprecedented commitment to treatment, research and prevention of HIV/AIDS at home and abroad," Secretary Thompson said. "With this budget, we are increasing access to vitally needed health care for people living with HIV/AIDS under the Ryan White Care Act."
The increases to the Ryan White Care Act and the HIV/AIDS in Minority in Communities Fund are part of President Bush's comprehensive program to defeat HIV/AIDS at home and abroad, a commitment that will be reflected in the fiscal year 2005 federal budget that will be released Feb. 2.
Under President Bush, overall federal spending on HIV/AIDS increased from $14.2 billion in fiscal year 2001 to $18.2 billion in the fiscal year 2004 budget request, a 28 percent increase. Last year, the President announced the Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, a five-year, $15 billion initiative to turn the tide in the global effort to combat the HIV/AIDS pandemic. This initiative will:
- Prevent 7 million new infections (60 percent of the projected 12 million new infections in the target countries). - Provide antiretroviral drugs for 2 million HIV-infected people. - Care for 10 million HIV-infected individuals and AIDS orphans. - Result in the tripling of the United State's global AIDS relief since fiscal year 2001. - Allocate $1 billion for the Global Fund over five years.
"This is a disease that is destroying families, communities and entire nations," Secretary Thompson said. "The spread of HIV/AIDS is not contained by national borders in an ever shrinking and mobile world. That is why we are making unprecedented investments in HIV/AIDS treatment, prevention and research here in the United States and around the world."