Important Happenings in HIV/Health Policy

Important Happenings in HIV/Health Policy

Week Ending: May 18, 2018
By: Matthew Rose & Sable K. Nelson

Trump Conflates HIV and HPV
Stigma, misinformation, and lack of education continue to be problems in the United States. This unfortunate reality was confirmed when Microsoft founder Bill Gates disclosed meetings he had with Donald Trump where Trump wanted to know if there was a difference between HIV and HPV. This underscores the need to address health literacy concerns and amplify/normalize HIV prevention and treatment messages/services. For more information,


Trump Administration Prepares to release domestic gag rule
As anticipated, the White House is poised to make an announcement regarding the proposed Domestic Gag rule. The proposed gag rule would do three things:

  • First, it would impose new rules that are designed to make it impossible for millions of patients to get birth control or preventive care from reproductive health care providers like Planned Parenthood.
  • Second, under this rule doctors, nurses, hospitals, and community health centers across the country could no longer refer their patients for safe, legal abortion.
  • Third, it removes the guarantee that you’re getting full and accurate information about your health care from your doctor. For nearly two decades, Title X law has been clear: health care providers cannot withhold information from you about your pregnancy options.

For more information,


FY19 Spending Season has began
Mark ups and consideration of the major spending bills for Fiscal Year 2019 have begun. Appropriations work has started taking place in both chambers with a full calendar of the process being released. Our friends at the Coalition for Human Needs have put together a list of where things are with some essential services.


Farm bill fails on first go around
On Friday the House voted against the Agriculture and Nutrition Act (H.R. 2), the Farm Bill reauthorization package, on a 198-213 vote. 30 Republicans joined all Democrats in voting against the package. House leadership has yet to announce potential next steps forward while the Senate Agriculture Committee continues behind-the-scenes negotiations on a separate version. For more information,


National Academy of Medicine Article Offers Suggestions for Improving Health Literacy
Supporting health literacy for all will improve quality of health and medical care, enhance the care experience, and may even lead to reducing health costs. Health literacy is the degree to which individuals can obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions. Furthermore, culture plays an important role in helping us to better understand health literacy. For people from different cultural backgrounds, health literacy is affected by belief systems, communication styles, and understanding and response to health information. Even though culture is only one part of health literacy, it is a very important piece of the complicated topic of health literacy. For more information,


What NMAC is Doing About It

  • NMAC remains vigilant in its advocacy to protect FY19 government funding and the existence of the social safety net.
  • NMAC has begun a robust process with some of our partners around looking at the development of a federal plan for ending the epidemic.
  • NMAC will meet with key legislators over the coming weeks to push for protections of our programs and support systems.


What You Can Do
TAKE ACTION: Speak truth to power by sharing your personal stories with your elected officials. It is vitally important to meet with your federal elected officials when they are at home. If we don’t support and advocate for HIV funding and programs, who will?  Our movement cannot afford to stand on the sidelines.  Your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives need to hear from you. 


Also, MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE REGISTERED TO VOTE in time for the primary and general elections happening this year:

Iowa 5/25/2018
Utah 5/27/2018
District of Columbia 5/29/2018

 For more information, VISIT→



Indiana 5/8/2018
Ohio 5/8/2018
North Carolina 5/8/2018
West Virginia 5/8/2018
Pennsylvania 5/15/2018
Idaho 5/15/2018
Oregon 5/15/2018
Nebraska 5/15/2018
Arkansas 5/22/2018
Georgia 5/22/2018
Kentucky 5/22/2018

More primary dates will be posted throughout the summer starting with our next policy update next week. Stay turned for this information and be sure to register so you can have your voice heard! For more information,