Senate Appropriations leadership proposes significant increases for domestic HIV programs: Hepatitis programs left flat-funded

The leadership of the United States Senate Appropriations Committee is proposing to significantly increase funding to continue to ramp up efforts to end HIV in the United States. Like the House, the Senate bills include increased funding for the Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. initiative by at least $245 million for domestic HIV testing, prevention, treatment, and research programs. This matches the amount proposed in President Biden’s budget.

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From the office of Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman: Reps. Watson Coleman, Barbara Lee, Schiff, Jones Reintroduce PrEP Assistance Program Act

“HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute fully supports this bill and urges Congress to swiftly pass it. While there are government programs for people living with HIV and other prevention programs, there isn’t a comprehensive nationwide program for PrEP,” said Executive Director Carl Schmid. “The PrEP Assistance Program Act would help fill that void by providing grants to states, community-based organizations, community health centers, and others to establish and support PrEP programs. Not only would these programs provide PrEP and associated medical services, but also much needed community and provider outreach programs.”

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PrEP4All and the HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute Lead National call to end ban on PrEP services spending with CDC grant funding

Today, PrEP4ALL with HIV+Hepatitis Policy Institute submitted a letter of over 60 signatures of leading HIV organizations calling on the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and the White House Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP) to request the CDC to reverse its decision to prohibit the use of CDC prevention funds to pay for the additional costs of PrEP, including provider visits, labs for screening and monitoring.

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Federal Government Issues Guidance to Insurers on Coverage of HIV Prevention Drugs

Today, the federal government issued guidance to insurers to remind them of their obligation to cover pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), which are drugs that prevent HIV, at no cost to their beneficiaries. The guidance, in the form of an FAQ, also clarifies that associated services with PrEP, such as provider visits and HIV, hepatitis, and STD testing along with other laboratory tests, must also be covered with no patient cost-sharing. This follows previous guidance for the coverage of other preventive services that have associated services and costs, such as colonoscopies.

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House Supports Significant Funding Increases for Domestic HIV Programs: Minimal Increase for Hepatitis Programs

The US House of Representatives is proposing to significantly increase funding to continue to ramp up efforts to end HIV in the United States. In addition to an increase of $245 million for domestic HIV testing, prevention, and treatment programs as part of the Ending the HIV Epidemic initiative, which matches the amount proposed in President Joe Biden’s budget, the Appropriations Committee in its FY22 Labor, HHS appropriations bill is proposing an $146 million increase to the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program, (+$100 million over Biden’s budget) and $190 million more for NIH AIDS Research that was not included in the president’s budget. The House is only including an increase of $5 million for CDC’s hepatitis division for a total of $44.5 million.

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