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Ohio AIDS Advocates Organize to Oppose Federal, State Cuts for Treatment, Care for HIV-Positive People

February 2, 2005

Ohio HIV/AIDS advocates and support groups on Feb. 10 are scheduled to hold a press conference in Cleveland to oppose federal and state cuts for treatment and care services for HIV-positive people in the state, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. According to Victoria Brooks, CEO of AIDS Volunteers of Cincinnati, officials at the Ohio Health Department said cuts in funding are "imminent," the Enquirer reports. "The cuts would be across the board, so I suspect there will be cuts in prevention as well as care," Brooks said, adding, "We're getting 20 to 25 new cases of people, already infected, coming in every month. These cuts would make it difficult for us to provide even base services for them." Cincinnati-area HIV/AIDS programs in November 2004 lost federal Ryan White CARE Act Title II funds to provide antiretroviral drugs, support and care because the region reported fewer than 500 new HIV/AIDS cases in the past five years, according to Jay Carey, director of public affairs for the state health department. Rich Aleshire, the Ryan White Title II program administrator at the state health department, said, "We will still be giving the same state funds to the Cincinnati region," adding, "Cincinnati just won't have the benefit of the additional (federal) funds that were coming along with it" (Klepal, Cincinnati Enquirer, 2/1).

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