State Assembly committees plan Dec. 14 hearings on AIDS rent hikes, Dec. 20 hearings on HIV testing
The New York State Assembly announced this week that it hold hearings later this month on two high-profile HIV/AIDS issues: massive rent hikes for AIDS housing tenants and proposals to eliminate written consent for HIV testing.
December 14: Proposed Rent Increases for AIDS Supportive Housing
Social Services Chair Deborah Glick will grill officials from the state Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) who've tried to implement the increase. And she and her Committee will take testimony from City officials, housing providers, clients, advocates and researchers on the impact of the increases and how they might be avoided.
December 20: HIV Testing, Counseling and Informed Consent
The Assembly Health Committee will hold hearings in New York City on December 20 to review state HIV testing consent rules, the impact of recent streamlining regulations implemented by NYSDOH, barriers to testing and treatment, and proposals from NYC Health Commissioner Thomas Frieden and the federal CDC to eliminate written consent for HIV testing.
Health Committee Chair Dick Gottfried and his fellow members will ask the following (quite thoughtful) questions:
Has NYSDOH's "2005 Guidance for HIV Counseling and Testing and New Laboratory Reporting Requirements" improved the counseling and testing process and promoted more testing?
Do the statutory requirements for written informed consent and counseling in Article 27-F create a real barrier to testing?
Are outreach and education programs appropriately targeted, designed and culturally sensitive so as to promote the importance of knowing one's HIV status?
Are there models that have successfully expanded testing in accordance with the standards of Article 27-F that can be replicated in other settings?
Are adequate programs and funding in place to assure that individuals who test HIV-positive have access to necessary health care and case management services?
Are there particular concerns about the proposed statutory amendments to Article 27-F in A.11075 and A.11958?
To sign up to testify or for more information contact Richard Conti of the Assembly Health Committee staff at 518-455-4941 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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