In a statement released October 19, the Obama Administration said it “strongly supports” Senate passage of the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act of 2009, which will authorize funding for the program for the next four years.

“The administration is committed to strengthening access to care for people living with HIV/AIDS,” read a statement from the Office of Management and Budget. “The legislation reauthorizes all parts of the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program and supports continued funding for the Minority AIDS Initiative, the goal of which is to address the disproportionate impact of the disease on racial and ethnic minorities.”

When the Ryan White CARE Act was last reauthorized, in 2006, Congress urged the program to adopt names-based HIV case data to ensure funding was allocated to areas that needed it most. This new legislation recognizes that some states' HIV case reporting systems are not yet optimal, and the bill will continue funding those regions still in transition. The bill also includes measures that simplify grant disbursement and reallocation of unexpended grant funds.

“The administration believes that the current bill makes important improvements in HIV/AIDS care and treatment and looks forward to working with the Congress on this effort to ensure that the Ryan White Program provides the most efficient, effective systems of care for people living with HIV/AIDS,” the statement concludes.