Recently, my alma mater took part in National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NBHAAD), held on February 7, 2012. Morehouse College, the only all-male, historically black institution of higher learning in the world, has a history of student activism and involvement. Nestled within the Atlanta University Center (AUC), Morehouse collaborated with the historically black institutions of … Continue reading “HIV/AIDS awareness in the Atlanta University Center: alive and well”
World AIDS Day. It is that time of year again when attention focuses on the response to HIV, looking back at progress made and looking forward to the opportunities and challenges ahead. Much of the attention this year is positive, highlighting the unique opportunities before us. The UNAIDS annual report puts forward the lofty, but … Continue reading “World AIDS Day 2011: Looking at a Year of Change”
Arguing, bantering, and…throwing paper balls at each other?! Read more from Juli Powers about one HIV care strategy session at the 2011 National HIV Prevention Conference, and why things are different this year.
Stewart Landers writes from the 2011 National HIV Prevention Conference, “It feels a bit ironic to be blogging for the first time from the National HIV Prevention Conference on the same day that the Boston Globe publicized the drastic budget cuts that the Massachusetts HIV/AIDS Office has made to its very successful HIV prevention programs. At the same time, the notion of “a new beginning” for HIV prevention, despite the new austerity, has been very much at the heart of the opening day of this meeting.”
Today is December 10, Human Rights Day. There are any number of human rights issues that can be written about, talked about, fought for. Why should everyone care about MSM? For me personally, it comes from the basic belief that all people have the right to live fully: without fear, without hiding, with support and love, and yes: with a right to sexual pleasure. And to live in health. Yet, now at the close of 2010 we still have a long way to go, and the need for action is urgent, both around prevention and care/treatment.
It is deceptively simple: a glossy white cover with gold letters, the seal of the President, and some words on paper. This is the first time in nearly three decades that the United States, one of the leaders in HIV, has a national strategy to address the epidemic. On this day, take a moment to celebrate this profound achievement. Read the strategy. We are all reflected in it. We all have a place.
In my community, youth are still unable to access youth-friendly HIV services. I believe communities like mine can empower HIV-positive youth who choose to be open about their HIV status by providing self-esteem training; supporting them to establish youth-centered positive prevention clubs; educating them on condom use, then making protection supplies available; and finally by linking them to existing youth centers and youth organizations to access reproductive health and HIV services.
The IAS-USA Treatment Guidelines were released during the conference, supporting earlier initiation of treatment with ART recommended for all patients with CD4 counts < 500, selected clinical conditions, and all symptomatic patients (provided patients are ready to start therapy: “The patient must be ready and willing to adhere to lifelong therapy,” the document explicitly states. Additional populations for ART initiation included pregnant women, and those with acute primary infections. The document is well worth a good read for its careful review of the data behind the pendulum swinging to earlier initiation in 2010.
Using HIV treatment as a strategy for prevention of HIV transmission.