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Medical News & Perspectives
December 21, 2011

Policy Paper Highlights Concerns About the Future of HIV Care and Its Funding

JAMA. 2011;306(23):2551-2552. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.1805

Boston— In addition to benefiting from scientific advances that allow many to live long and productive lives, individuals in the United States with HIV and AIDS have also had access to HIV-related services through the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program, which provides the services for those with insufficient health care coverage or financial resources. The program is often called the “payer of last resort” because it fills gaps in care not met by other payers.

Clinicians and patients worry about the fate of this support system in the face of the nation's changing health care and economic environments. Because almost everyone in the United States will likely have insurance of some sort by 2014 under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, officials question whether Ryan White funding will be necessary.