Morristown Planned Parenthood Among AIDS/HIV Funding Beneficiaries

Gov. Chris Christie announced $19.5 million increase in treatment funds Tuesday.

Planned Parenthood's Morris County location in Morristown will receive over $150,000 in state funding, as part of a $19.5 million package the governor announced at a press conference in New Brunswick Tuesday.

Chris Christie and Health Commissioner Mary O'Dowd held a press conference Oct. 23 at the Hyacinth AIDS Foundation, which is receiving the largest amount of funding, over $2.1 million. In total, the package will benefit 54 HIV/AIDS treatment organizations in New Jersey.

According to a press release from the governor's office, $11.2 million will be used specifically for HIV counseling, testing and education, while the other $8.3 million is slated for medical care and social services.

O'Dowd said the funding follows an additional $8 million in federal funding that was made available earlier this year to New Jersey for AIDS and HIV treatment.

More than 36,000 New Jersey residents liver with HIV/AIDS, O'Dowd said.

Of those people living with HIV/AIDS, 7,000 of those low-income residents receive medications through a state drug distribution program, she said.

During the press conference, Christie stressed that progress in treatment and support of people living with HIV/AIDS has turned it from a death sentence to a "chronic disease."

However, the stigma of an HIV/AIDS diagnosis still persists, which deters people from being tested, he said.

"It only becomes that (a chronic disease) if you're treating it," he said.

140 HIV/AIDS testing centers exist in New Jersey, Christie said.

Christie said the decision to make the money available is "in concert" with other public health initiatives of his administration, including treatment instead of jail time for first-time non-violent drug offenders, a $3.5 million increase in funding for cancer screenings and a $1 billion influx of funding for hospitals throughout the state. 

Click here for the complete list of beneficiaries.

Nancy Bodnar October 24, 2012 at 12:54 PM
I have to agree with funding for education that will most likely prevent unwanted pregnancies and/or aids/HIV, std's.
Anna Lisa October 24, 2012 at 01:29 PM
There are many people who believe that contraceptives are abortion-causing agents. I believe the term is abortifacient. I am not a fan of abortion--I think it's awful and scary and a horror show--but I am a fan of contraceptives, including emergency contraception. I think it's a shame that the fight against abortion also seems to include a fight against birth control.
Anna Lisa October 24, 2012 at 01:30 PM
I am with you 100%.
Jersey October 25, 2012 at 01:06 AM
It's estimated that PP's contraceptive services avert over 580,000 unwanted pregnancies per year. If you are anti-abortion, you should absolutely support PP. they are the largest provider of contraceptive services in the nation.
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