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Spending Review acknowledges continuing importance of HIV social care

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Following a recent campaign led by NAT (National AIDS Trust) to protect funding for social care services in England for people living with HIV, the Government has committed in the recent Spending Review to take account of HIV social care needs within the overall local authority grant over the next five years.  Furthermore, funding linked to ‘AIDS Support’ will increase from £25.5 million in this year to £36.2 million by 2014/15.

The campaign, which took place over the last few months, involved rallying organisations from across the country to write to the Government and highlight the importance of retaining this funding as an identifiable amount within local authority budgets.

Following the Spending Review, all specific grants – including the AIDS Support Grant which previously provided funding for HIV social care – will be rolled into the Formula Grant.*  However, there should continue to be identifiable allocations relating to HIV social care within the Formula Grant distributed to local authorities.

Deborah Jack, Chief Executive of NAT, says:

‘NAT is extremely pleased to see a commitment from the Government to increase funding for HIV social care following our recent campaign.  This commitment shows an acknowledgment of the importance of funding these services, and recognition that the rising numbers and ageing population of people living with HIV will result in both continuing and increasing social care needs within this group.

‘However, we do remain concerned that with the removal of the ring-fence around this funding and the increased emphasis on local flexibility, there is a risk that HIV social care funds could be spent elsewhere.  NAT encourages all local authorities to ensure the needs of people living with HIV in every area are met, and this means using the funding committed to HIV social care to provide the services necessary.’

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Notes to the editor:

*Further information can be found within a letter on Local Government and the Spending Review from The Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government
http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/localgovernment/pdf/1745945.pdf

For further information please contact:

Charli Scouller
Communications Manager
NAT
020 7814 6733
press@nat.org.uk

NAT 
NAT (National AIDS Trust) is the UK’s leading charity dedicated to transforming society’s response to HIV. We provide fresh thinking, expert advice and practical resources. We campaign for change.
Shaping attitudes. Challenging injustice. Changing lives.
www.nat.org.uk