Policy Updates: Hill Happenings and Administration Activities

By Mike Weir April 8, 2019

Hill Happenings


Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar testified before the Senate Appropriations Labor-HHS (L-HHS) Subcommittee to discuss the Department's fiscal year FY2020 budget

NASTAD signed onto a letter organized by the Coalition for Health Funding, Committee for Education Funding, Coalition on Human Needs, and Campaign to Invest in America's Workforce seeking a strong 302(b) funding allocation for the L-HHS spending bill in FY2020.

Budget Caps

House Budget Committee Chairman John Yarmuth (D-KY-3) introduced the Investing for the People Act of 2019. The bill would increase military and domestic spending caps by more than $350 billion over the next two years. The legislation is cosponsored by House Appropriations Chairwoman Nita Lowey (D-NY-17).

Administration Activities

Capacity Building Assistance
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will award up to $120 million over five years to 17 organizations under its new program, PS19-1904: Capacity Building Assistance (CBA) for High Impact HIV Prevention Program Integration. The program, which began on April 1, 2019, seeks to strengthen the capacity and improve the performance of the nation’s HIV prevention workforce, including staff at state and local health departments, community-based organizations (CBOs) and healthcare providers. NASTAD is a CBA grantee and will serve the South for Track C: Integrated HIV Activities and Structural Interventions.

National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day

April 10 is National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day (NYHAAD). The CDC provided free tools in the NYHAAD Resource Center to help in supporting awareness activities and testing events.

Ryan White Part B Supplemental Grant Application

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) recently released the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program States/Territories Part B Supplemental Grant Program announcement. The amount of funding awarded will be determined by the applicants ability to demonstrate the need for supplemental funding to provide comprehensive HIV care and treatment services for people living with HIV (PLWH) in the state/territory. HRSA expects approximately $86,151,000 to be available to fund up to 30 recipients. There will be a technical assistance webinar for applicants on Wednesday, April 17, 2019 from 2:30-4:00 PM EDT. Applications are due by May 28, 2019.


Shifting the Paradigm in HIV Prevention and Treatment Service Delivery Toward Differentiated Care for Youth

Stakeholders Now Invited to Join HHS to Highlight Growing Elimination Efforts In United States

“As May Hepatitis Awareness Month approaches, the HHS Office of HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Policy (OHAIDP) invites you to join us in highlighting efforts to eliminate viral hepatitis in the United States. We are developing a new webpage to feature a map of hepatitis elimination projects from across the United States, Mapping Hepatitis Elimination in Action.”

Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health and Wellbeing

Northwestern University’s Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health and Wellbeing is requesting proposals from community-based organizations (CBOs) and other HIV service organizations to implement Keep It Up! (KIU!), an online e-health HIV prevention intervention, as part of their existing HIV testing services.

KIU! has been demonstrated to be highly effective throughout the past decade in multiple randomized control trials and program evaluations of the intervention delivered by CBOs. The RFP solicits applications to identify and fund 22 CBOs/HIV service organizations in different counties to integrate KIU! into their existing HIV testing and prevention services. The RFP includes a map displaying eligible counties (list of counties can be found on page 25 of the RFP). Northwestern is trying to make sure that all CBOs in the eligible counties are aware of the RFP to ensure that they get a nationally representative sample of CBOs. Health department staff are encouraged to review and distribute to eligible CBOs in their jurisdiction.

Upcoming Meetings

2019 National Sexual Health Conference 

The 2019 National Sexual Health Conference will take place July 10-12 in Chicago, IL. The conference aims to create opportunities to share information, efforts, and best practices around sexual health across the lifespan by bridging the varied disciplines of education, advocacy, and clinical care, among others. Registration is currently open.

Job Opportunities

Chief, Center for HIV/STI Integration and Capacity Program Manager II – Maryland

The Maryland Department of Health is hiring a Chief for their Center for HIV/STI Integration and Capacity Program Manager II within their Infectious Disease Prevention and Health Services Bureau. This posting closes on April 9, 2019.

Communicable Disease Prevention Program Manager – Wyoming

The Wyoming Department of Health is hiring a Communicable Disease Prevention Program Manager within their Communicable Disease Unit. This posting is open until filled.

HIV Planner – Texas

The UT-Austin Health Innovation and Evaluation Team and the Texas Department of State Health Services is hiring for an HIV Planner within their HIV Care Services Group and the HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch Planning team.

Bureau Chief – Houston, Texas

The Houston Health Department is hiring a Bureau Chief for their Bureau of HIV/STD & Viral Hepatitis Prevention within their Disease Prevention and Control division. This posting closes on April 17, 2019.

News Bulletin

The wrong way to eradicate HIV

“One reason that some Americans don’t know they have HIV is that they lack access to routine health care. While millions of people have gained access to health care through Obamacare or the expansion of Medicaid that accompanied it, there remains a significant coverage gap in states that decided not to expand Medicaid, and it’s those states, many of them in the South, which have the highest rates of HIV infection. For the more than 2.5 million poor, uninsured Americans who cannot get Medicaid or any financial support to purchase Obamacare, one of the only remaining places they can get health care, including low-cost or free HIV testing, is at so-called Title X clinics.”

Federal, state and local health officials plot paths for ending HIV/AIDS in Maryland

“When national public health leaders met Wednesday with state and local health officials, they made it clear they didn’t come to Baltimore to impose a top-down approach to ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic. “We’re here to listen,” said Dr. Robert Redfield Jr., the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who came from the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore.”

Blue states threaten to drop family planning program over Trump abortion rule

“Some Democratic states plan to withdraw from the main federal family planning program if they can’t win a court challenge to stop the Trump administration from steering the money away from health providers who offer abortions or make abortion referrals. Oregon and Washington already have said they would opt out of the Title X program, which steers $286.5 million for birth control and reproductive health services for low-income women, if the new rules take effect in early May. Maryland could soon join them, and other states may follow. They say the new restrictions would undermine medical care for patients, and, in some cases, violate state laws.”