News From South Florida AIDS Network, July 25, 2014

The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) met on July 11. Joey Wynn, SFAN’s chair, announced that changes to the bylaws of the Broward County HIV Health Services Planning Council (see article “Changes to RWC administration in Broward”) threatened to put the Ryan White Care (RWC) Part B contracts out of compliance. In order to bring Broward’s RWC Part B contracts, back into compliance, RWC Part B has to redesign its structure. SFAN’s next meeting (August 1), will begin a half an hour earlier (9:30 a.m.) to include a full presentation of the new structure.

According to Joey, in the future SFAN will focus more on the AIDS Insurance Continuation Program (AICP) and AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP). AICP provides the funds to pay for health insurance premiums, copays, and deductibles; ADAP provides the funds to buy life saving HIV medications. Over the next few years, as most RWC clients transition to purchasing individual marketplace exchanges under the Affordable Care Act, AICP will become as important as ADAP. The Wellness Center of South Florida and Broward House, provide AICP services in Broward County.

Jerry of The Wellness Center of South Florida reported on AICP. The State of Florida has temporarily restricted AICP’s use while it develops the financial procedures and mechanisms necessary to cover all insurance plans purchased under the Affordable Care Act. At present, the Wellness Center only can enroll into its AICP program, those people with employer or COBRA based health insurance. More plans should become available for AICP assistance during open enrollment, beginning this November.

Mario de Santis of the Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS (HOPWA) reported that the Fort Lauderdale City Commission voted to keep HOPWA’s voucher programs safe from funding cuts. He also announced that the HOPWA presentation “Housing and AIDS 101” would not take place in July, but would take place in October. At the next SFAN meeting, he will discuss HOPWA’s short term funding and utility aid.

Next Meeting: August 1, 2014 at 9:30 am, at the Holy Cross Healthplex, 1000 NE 56th Street (at Dixie), Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33334. Newcomers are encouraged to attend.

The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) functions as the networking body for Ryan White Care (RWC), Part B grants n Broward County. RWC Part B grants fund ADAP, AICP and the non-medical components of Ryan White Care. Its monthly meetings are open to the public and newcomers (providers, consumers, and interested individuals) are encouraged to attend.

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