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California Legislature Passes Historic HIV Testing Bill (AB 682); AHF Urges Governor to Sign Crucial Lifesaving Legislation
Date:9/10/2007

AB 682 (Berg, Garcia, Huffman), the California Routine HIV Screening Bill,

Cleared the Legislature Today; Bi-Partisan Bill, Sponsored by AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the California Medical Association, & the Health Officers Association of California, Will Improve Health Outcomes & Reduce

HIV Transmission

SACRAMENTO, Calif., Sept. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the operator of the largest non-government HIV testing program in California, today praised the California Legislature for its passage of Assembly Bill 682, California's Routine HIV Screening Bill, which cleared the Assembly on final concurrence (64-0) today after clearing the Senate in a 38 to 1 vote late last week. The bill now moves on to the Governor's desk, where it is hoped that Governor Schwarzenegger will sign this lifesaving bill into law.

The bi-partisan bill, jointly authored by Assembly Members Patty Berg, Bonnie Garcia and Jared Huffman and co-sponsored by AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the California Medical Association (CMA) and the Health Officers Association of California, streamlines the HIV testing process, so that medical providers can identify Californians who are unaware of their HIV- positive status and bring them into care and treatment, while sustaining the fundamental voluntary nature of HIV screening. The bill removes a major barrier to HIV testing by requiring a patient to give simple consent, rather than informed consent, before an HIV test can be administered.

"AB 682 is the most important change in public HIV/AIDS policy in years," said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. "This bill will initiate a cultural shift in California among providers and consumers, that, today and in the future, will ensure that thousands of Californians with HIV will get crucial and life-prolonging care and treatment."

"The California Legislature has recognized the importance of this critical
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SOURCE AIDS Healthcare Foundation
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
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