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U.S. News

Tennessee: Memphis Gay and Lesbian Center's HIV Testing Program Suspended After State Funding Cut

February 14, 2012

A state funding cut to Planned Parenthood for HIV and syphilis prevention is causing a recipient agency, the Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center, to suspend its HIV screening services. In a statement, however, MGLCC vowed it will explore other revenue streams to resume and expand the testing program.

Planned Parenthood did not directly fund MGLCC, but provided medical equipment and personnel for the screenings and reported test results and statistics to the state. Without that $150,000 in support, HIV testing at the center is no longer financially possible.

Since 2008, when HIV testing began at MGLCC, more than 500 people have been screened in what was the only regularly scheduled, after-hours program of its kind in the Mid-South, according to the group. Joan Carr, Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region director of community affairs, said the program was open to people of all backgrounds, not just members of the gay community.

The prevention grants were dropped by the state in December -- four months after being approved. Planned Parenthood is suing the Tennessee Department of Health to regain the grants, maintaining that "political considerations" were a factor in the state's move, said Carr.

Back to other news for February 2012

Adapted from:
Commercial Appeal (Memphis)
02.10.2012; Scott Carroll

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
See Also
More News and Articles on HIV Groups and Medical Care in Southern U.S. States

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