Pic via dbmathews.com

With almost 3,300 names, Florida’s AIDS Drug Assistance Program waiting list is still the longest in the United States, by far.

The AIDS Drug Assistance Program (known as ADAP) provides medications for the treatment of HIV and AIDS for people who cannot afford to pay because they are unemployed, uninsured or underinsured. It has been in a funding crisis since last year.

According to National Alliance of States and Territorial AIDS Directors, as of Oct. 27 (.pdf) there are 6,689 individuals in 12 states on AIDS Drug Assistance Program waiting lists.

Florida’s ADAP waiting list — which, as of last week, stands at almost 3,300 —had increased to more than 4,150 individuals in mid-September. According to Joey Wynn of Broward House, an HIV/AIDS community service organization, the state has received a number of increases in funding for Ryan White, the federal program that manages ADAP dollars. The increases have allowed “the [state’s] Bureau of HIV AIDS to take some folks off the wait list.”

Wynn adds in an email to The Florida Independent that “numbers will get tricky over the next few months,” as new people are added to the ADAP waiting list while individuals who have been “on the list the longest start to move off the list into the program.”

“We do not anticipate the entire wait list will be eliminated, but it will go down substantially,” Wynn writes.

Carl Schmid of The AIDS Institute writes to the Independent that Florida received $7 million in federal funds distributed to the state in September, which explains the drop in the number of people on the state’s waiting list.

Brandon Macsata of the ADAP Advocacy Association and Joseph Terrill of The AIDS Healthcare Foundation tell the Independent that ADAP waiting list numbers will eventually rise again.

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