Ohio To Apply For Federal Funds Aimed At Preventing HIV Among Teenagers

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Ohio Department of Education officials recently decided to apply for a $1.25 million, five-year grant from CDC intended to prevent the spread of HIV among teenagers, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports (Rollenhagen, Cleveland Plain Dealer, 11/9). The department in late October had said it would not apply for the grant.

Toreceive a grant, each state must submit a five-year plan for promotingHIV prevention among teenagers and establish a panel to reviewmaterials that might be offered to schools. Ohio received the grant for12 years but dropped out in 2000 after some state lawmakers disagreedwith some language and condom-promotion aspects of a teacher-trainingprogram.

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Karla Carruthers, a spokesperson for the department,last month said that the state does not have an existing program tosupport the grant and that developing one would require the Legislatureto approve changes in the state's health education policies (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report,11/1). Carruthers on Thursday said that department officials decided toapply for the grant following "conversations with the administrationand legislative offices," including the office of Gov. Ted Strickland(D). Keith Dailey, a spokesperson for the governor, said Stricklandsupports the application.

According to the Plain Dealer,the education department received about 2,000 e-mails after theannouncement that it would not apply for the grant, most of which werefrom people who wanted the state to apply. Earl Pike -- executivedirector of the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland,who promoted an e-mail campaign -- said the decision to not apply"really struck a nerve for a lot of people across the state." Pikeadded that the task force is "thrilled" the department is "exercisingleadership on the issue."

State education officials are workingout the details of the application but plan to propose using the grantto create an HIV prevention program within the department, Carrutherssaid. CDC officials have said there is enough money for every state toreceive a grant under the program. The application deadline is Nov. 21(Cleveland Plain Dealer, 11/9). If the grant is awarded, Ohio could receive up to $250,000 annually for five years, the Columbus Dispatch reports. Ohio and Utah have been the only states not to apply for the grants in recent years (Candisky, Columbus Dispatch, 11/10).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view theentire Kaiser DailyHIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, and sign up for email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email . The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report ispublished for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The Henry J. Kaiser FamilyFoundation.

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