Texas: Center to Admit AIDS Patients
April 20, 2006
On Tuesday, Bexar County commissioners voted to give San Antonio AIDS Foundation (SFAF) $26,000 from general funds to permit it to continue operating the county's only skilled nursing and hospice facility for ill and indigent HIV/AIDS patients.
At the end of February, SFAF learned the county's Ryan White Title I grant was cut by 15 percent. In addition, the San Antonio Area HIV Health Services Planning Council divided the bulk of remaining funds among five core areas, including drug reimbursement and outpatient medical care.
Facing a $257,000 shortfall, SFAF was forced to lay off five staff members, including two nurses, and reduce the number of people it cared for, leaving hospitals without a place to transition indigent HIV/AIDS patients. David Ewell, SFAF's executive director and a nonvoting Planning Council member, said he felt the council's funding shifts were "an overreaction to the cut."
With the county funding, SFAF officials said they can begin rehiring nurses and admitting some patients. Ewell said SFAF cannot fill all 36 beds, as officials are unsure how far the new funds can be stretched.
The new funding, together with $99,000 from other county grants and the University Health System, combines for a total of $125,000 in restored funding. In addition, SFAF learned it will be able to apply for another $25,000 grant.
San Antonio Express-News
04.19.2006; Tracy Idell Hamilton
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.