2 min

A little more about funding the Federal Initiative on HIV/AIDS

Further to my story on this year’s funding levels with the Federal Initiative to Address HIV/AIDS in Canada, there were a couple of things that didn’t make it into the final version. One of the biggest was another table, which compared the real funding levels to what was planned when the program was announced in 2004: 

Fiscal year

Planned funding

Actual funding


$42.2 M



$47.2 M



$55.2 M

$54.8 M


$63.2 M

$63.1 M


$71.2 M

$61.0 M


$84.4 M

$69.2 M


$84.4 M

$68.8 M


$84.4 M

$72.6 M

As you can see, things changed dramatically in 2007 when the government diverted that funding to the Canadian HIV Vaccine Initiative (CHVI).

As well, I had this very interesting exchange with Ujjal Dosanjh:

Dale Smith: Looking back from where this is sitting today to where you were when you announced this when you were minister, what’s your thought process as to where it’s gone?
Ujjal Dosanjh: With the exception of the children’s toys, on which they’ve been rabid and robust, and all power to them, but generally speaking, on major issues, on issues of more substance in terms of the structure of healthcare and in terms of jurisdiction, this government is in denial. My view is they wish they didn’t have to deal with healthcare, and they’re only dealing with it because they have to, because the Canadians are forcing them to. If they had a choice, they would run away from healthcare generally, and public health as well. In the context of that, HIV/AIDS education, prevention and awareness – all of that is going to suffer. It is in the nature of things, when you have a government that believes in smaller government and doesn’t believe that federal government should have any jurisdiction in healthcare. You live in Ottawa, you follow the House, and every time they stand up, and even the prime minister in his latest PostMedia interview said healthcare is a provincial responsibility.

DS: I think that’s [the minister’s] favourite refrain.
UJ: And the prime minister said this more recently, but that’s the health minister’s favourite refrain, too. The prime minister in his latest PostMedia interview said very clearly that because they were asking them about 2014 and the accord, he basically said it’s the provinces that manage healthcare; we will be cooperating with them, we’ll work with them, but that’s not an indication of leadership. In that context, I’m not surprised where we are on HIV/AIDS. I think that’s where we are generally on healthcare.
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