We are all tired of hearing about sequestration. The focus on numbers allows us to forget that these budget cuts are a real life or death issue for people with HIV.
They hurt people like M., an unemployed 45-year-old African-American mother of three, who learned that she had HIV when her ex-husband admitted to her that he was infected before they divorced. She waited six months and experienced suicidal thoughts before seeking medical and mental health care. Her life now depends on federally funded services that may soon be in short supply.
The 5 percent budget cut resulting from the federal sequester process translates into more people infected with HIV, more people whose health will deteriorate from HIV to AIDS, and more who will die from AIDS.