Health Departments Won’t Be Able To Charge For HIV Testing

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West Virginia health departments dealing with shrinking federal funding will not be able to charge for HIV testing.

In the last two years, West Virginia has lost more than $600,000 of federal money for HIV-AIDS programs.

A bill that passed the Senate unanimously would have let health departments charge people or insurers for HIV testing. For those without insurance, tests would have been provided for free or on a sliding fee scale.

The bill was shot down Monday by the House Health Committee.

Delegates were concerned that people would read that health departments were charging for tests and would not get tested.

As the Affordable Care Act leads to more people being insured, the federal government is encouraging local departments to charge insurers for services that had been taxpayer funded.