Home to more than half of the 1.1 million HIV-positive people in the United States, the South struggles to provide treatment and related services through federally funded programs, according to the Southern AIDS Coalition (SAC) as reported by The Westside Gazette.

Despite federal efforts to increase HIV/AIDS resources in 2006 by revising funding distribution through the Ryan White CARE Act, a lot of Southerners living with HIV—particularly those in rural areas—still lack adequate health care, housing and transportation services

“Certainly the $30 million shifted to the South helped, but we still have bigger problems,” said Kathie Hiers, former co-chair of SAC. “There needs to be a better level of parity between the states. The money should follow the epidemic, but the way it stands now, the cities get way more per person than the rural areas.”