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HIV Treatment and Prevention
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The AIDS epidemic has taken an enormous toll since its discovery in the early 1980s. According to the latest available data, in 2017, 38,739 people received an HIV diagnosis in the United States. That annual number of new diagnoses has essentially remained stable since 2013. Worse, about 1 in 7 of the estimated 1.1 million people with HIV in the U.S. don’t know they have it. These data make clear that HIV prevention and treatment tools aren’t reaching the people who need them most. In fact, certain populations and geographic areas continue to bear a disproportionate burden of HIV disease, requiring us to sharpen the focus of our collective prevention efforts on gay and bisexual men, African Americans and Hispanics/Latinos, and U.S. residents of southern states. 

 

Early Detection, Early Treatment Makes a Difference

MPCA has joined the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services in an effort to increase and routinize HIV testing at Michigan health centers. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, routine testing could reduce new HIV infections by more than 30 percent every year if all infected individuals learned their HIV status, received treatment, and changed their behavior patterns.

Routinized testing can help increase diagnoses of HIV infection, destigmatize the testing process, link clinical care with prevention, and ensure immediate access to clinical care for persons with newly identified HIV infection. Plus, proper adherence to antiretroviral therapy can help people living with HIV achieve an undetectable viral load. When that occurs for at least six months, the risk of transferring the virus to a person who does not have it is negligible to nonexistent. In fact, nearly half of all people living with HIV in the United States cannot transmit HIV to any other person. Health care professionals refer to this state as “undetectable = untransmittable” (U=U). 

Health Centers Are Leaders in New Models of HIV Care

Michigan health centers receiving funding under the Ryan White Program provide a comprehensive continuum of outpatient HIV primary care services, including HIV counseling, testing, and referral; medical evaluation and clinical care; other primary care services; and referrals to other health services. 

In addition, the Health Resources and Services Administration recently unveiled a ten-year initiative beginning in FY 2020 with the goal of reducing new HIV infections to fewer than 3,000 per year by 2030. HRSA-funded health centers are a key entry point for people with HIV who are undiagnosed. Nearly two million patients annual receive an HIV test at a health center. You can learn more about Ending the HIV Epidemic here

Background, Research, and Resources

MPCA provides a wealth of resources to health centers and community partners  related to the delivery of HIV care in primary and preventive care settings. 

 

Oral Health and HIV

Caring for Mobile Patients With HIV

HIV Care and Prevention Webinars

Continuing Education Opportunities on Transgender Health and HIV

Learning Modules

HIV Prevention and Treatment Publications

PrEP Talks

For more information, contact Dawne Velianoff, director of operations, training, and programs. 

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