NEW YORK: Funding For HIV Reporting Criticized
New York county health officials and HIV advocacy groups are already lining up to blast the newly released regulations in the state's controversial names-based reporting and partner-notification law. Calling the law "another unfunded mandate," Nassau County Health Commissioner Kathy Gaffney said that while she supports partner notification, "we are being asked to support it with our hands tied behind our back." Officials from the New York State Association of County Health Officials pegged the administrative costs of the law at $8.35 million annually. Gov. George Pataki (R) has said he will allocate a little more than $4 million, an amount consistent with the 36% reimbursement formula typical for regional public health programs, but decried by county officials as unreasonable. State Rep. Nettie Mayersohn (D), who sponsored last summer's legislation, said yesterday she will "advocate for more funding" to implement the program. "We're going to start treating HIV like every other infectious disease," Mayersohn said, adding, "We want the program to succeed." AIDS advocacy groups plan a news conference today in Manhattan to blast the law they say "undermines medical confidentiality" (Rabin, Newsday, 3/17).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.