Congress Takes Historic Step in Addressing STD Crisis in America
Breaking a 16-year impasse, US House set to approve $10 million increase in STD funding; other increases to school health, family planning, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, and teen pregnancy prevention
May 8, 2019
May 8, 2019, Washington, DC – Breaking a 16-year impasse, the US House of Representatives is set to approve a FY ’20 funding bill for health programs that makes historic investments in STDs. This critically needed funding increase comes as STDs have reached all-time highs in America.
“After nearly 20 years of federal and state STD funding cutbacks, Congress has made a down payment on curbing STDs in America and we are deeply grateful to Representatives Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut and Tom Cole of Oklahoma for their leadership shepherding these increases,” says David C. Harvey, NCSD executive director.
The House will also vote to approve the proposed increases for school-based health programs, family planning, teen pregnancy prevention programs, hepatitis and a new HIV elimination plan. “All of these programs make a difference in people’s lives and are proven effective at serving youth, low-income women and families, gay men, and people at-risk or living with HIV or hepatitis,” says Harvey.
NCSD strongly urges the House to accept these investments in our nation’s health, and will work closely with Senate leadership to make sure they do the same
“Today in America, we are seeing skyrocketing rates of babies born with syphilis, women with undiagnosed chlamydia, and a worsening syphilis epidemic among gay men, to name just a few examples,” says Matthew Prior, NCSD communications director. “Congenital syphilis causes still-births, chlamydia can result in infertility and cervical cancer in women, and STDs are one of the main drivers of new HIV infections. This investment is badly needed to help protect millions of people affected by STDs each year.”
“NCSD is grateful to members of Congress, our state and local governmental public health program members, STD clinic administrators and Disease Investigation Specialists (DIS), and our board and staff and consultants, for working tirelessly to tell their story to policymakers. Today you have been heard,” adds Taryn Couture, NCSD government relations associate director. “Now, on to the Senate to match these increases.”
For more information on FY ’20 Labor/HHS appropriations in the House, you can find the bill and summaries here.
NCSD is a national public health membership organization representing health department STD directors, their support staff, and community-based partners across 50 states, seven large cities, and five US territories. Our mission is to advance effective STD prevention programs and services across the country. NCSD does this as the voice of our membership. We provide leadership, build capacity, convene partners, and advocate. Go to ncsddc.org for more information.