AHP to Supervisors on HIV Funding

lori-rob-pride-2013At the San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors meeting on May 7, Mayor Ed Lee announced his plan to restore the projected $2.7 million in federal funding cuts to HIV services in San Francisco.

According to the SF Examiner, “Since 2011, federal budget cuts have led Lee and the Board of Supervisors to backfill more than $20 million in HIV funding.”

AHP Director Lori Thoemmes attended the May 7 meeting and gave this testimony:

Our agency provides mental health and substance use services. In our 30 years of service provision our work has targeted the most vulnerable of clients, particularly people with HIV, mental illness and substance abuse issues.

Many of these services would not be available to them without the city’s commitment to maintaining level funding. Our Ryan White services include everything from HIV psychiatric crisis assessments to peer facilitated support groups; assertive case management for substance using client to psychiatry treatment; HIV dementia assessments to individual counseling services.

We are a grateful provider of care for people who are eligible for behavioral health treatment with Medi-Cal and we still have more people, both HIV-positive and HIV-negative, than we are funded to see in need of behavioral health services.

Thank you to the City leaders for your ongoing efforts to maintain the quality of care that is helping so many of our neighbors lead more healthy and meaningful lives.