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April 06, 2011

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Multiple Community Partners Collaborate to Address HIV/AIDS Among Women in the Pacific Northwest

By Christopher Bates, M.P.A., Executive Director, Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS and Senior Advisor to the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, Infectious Diseases, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Later this month I will have the honor of speaking to a regional training conference about women of color and HIV/AIDS for health professionals from the Pacific Northwest. This training is just one of many important local, state, and regional community mobilizations aligned with the National HIV/AIDS Strategy that are unfolding across the country.

Like many of those mobilizations, the Friday, April 15, conference in Seattle, HIV/AIDS Conference for Health Professionals: The Feminization of an Epidemic Exit Disclaimer, addresses several of the Strategy’s important priorities. In this case, those are:

  • Taking deliberate steps to increase the number and diversity of available providers of clinical care and related services for people living with HIV – Increasing the number of HIV providers, as well as increasing knowledge among all health professionals about HIV risks and prevention is critical to achieving the Strategy’s goals. This involves a wide range of health professionals in all health care settings so that providers who are not HIV specialists are adequately equipped to provide prevention services to high-risk populations and link patients who test positive to HIV clinical care providers. This includes not just physicians, registered nurses, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants, but also social workers, pharmacists, dentists as well as health educators, mental/behavioral health professionals, public health personnel, and substance abuse professionals, all of whom are invited to participate in this training event.

Continue reading "Multiple Community Partners Collaborate to Address HIV/AIDS Among Women in the Pacific Northwest" »

February 16, 2011

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National HIV/AIDS Strategy Key Issue at January PACHA Meeting

By Christopher Bates, Executive Director, Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

PACHA

Members of PACHA

Much of the recent meeting of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) focused on implementing the National HIV/AIDS Strategy. The Strategy asks PACHA to provide, on an ongoing basis, recommendations on how to effectively implement the Strategy, as well as establish a mechanism to monitor the Strategy’s implementation. Last week, Council members heard updates from White House and agency officials, asked many questions and offered thoughtful suggestions. These are a few of the highlights.  

Mr. Jeffrey Crowley, Director of the White House’s Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP), expressed appreciation to the Federal agencies for their efforts toward the Strategy’s goals to date. He also encouraged a balance of efforts between the important innovative planning and coordination taking place within and across agencies and actually executing the plans developed.  Mr. Crowley also shared some of the activities his office has on the near horizon including further work on establishing indicators that measure progress towards the Strategy’s goals, preparing the 2012 NHAS Federal Implementation Plan, and drafting the first report to the President on the nation’s progress. That report, Mr. Crowley noted, will not merely be a report on Federal activities, but a review of the nation’s collective efforts including those by State, tribal and local governments, businesses, faith communities, philanthropy, the scientific and medical communities, educational institutions, people living with HIV, and others.

Dr. Howard Koh, Assistant Secretary for Health, reported that HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius had recently issued a communiqué to senior leadership of all the Department’s Operating Divisions and Staff Offices reiterating the Department’s commitment to implementing the Strategy and detailing several steps to be taken to help achieve the goals of the Strategy. These included continued efforts toward greater intra-departmental coordination and collaboration on matters including grant administration, common metrics, and funding announcements as well as active support of the “12 Cities Project”.

Continue reading "National HIV/AIDS Strategy Key Issue at January PACHA Meeting " »

February 01, 2011

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The Importance of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

By Meico Whitlock, AIDS.gov Fellow

For the last three years, our blog posts for National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NBHAAD), February 7th of every year, have focused on new media or statistics about African Americans and HIV. This year we wanted to share with you thoughts from two of our colleagues. No new media. No statistics. Just important words about an important day:

As a Black gay man living with HIV, you know, the challenges for all of us are very difficult, but I think that what we should all know, that we should all also commit ourselves to, is that we can live long with HIV and that we can help to end the HIV epidemic in our communities. National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is an opportunity to recommit to that goal and to do everything that we can to overcome this and to make our communities healthy and well.

-Cornelius Baker, Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) Member and Advisor to The National Black Gay Men's Advocacy Coalition Exit Disclaimer and the AED Center on AIDS & Community Health Exit Disclaimer.

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January 21, 2011

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PACHA to Convene Next Week

By Ronald Valdiserri, M.D., M.P.H, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, Infectious Diseases, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) meets on January 27 and 28 in Washington, DC. During next week’s meeting, PACHA will receive an update on the operational plans submitted to the White House by the Federal Departments and Agencies identified as leads in the Strategy.

The National HIV/AIDS Strategy tasks PACHA with monitoring the effective implementation of  the Strategy.

You are invited to follow PACHA’s activities via its website. If you will be in the Washington, DC, area, you may register to attend the meeting on January 27. For more information, read the meeting notice.

November 16, 2010

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PACHA Advises on HHS National HIV/AIDS Strategy Operational Plan

By Ron Valdiserri, M.D., M.P.H., Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, Infectious Diseases, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) shared observations and feedback on a preliminary, confidential draft of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS) Operational Plan during a members-only conference call on November 9, 2010. My colleague Christopher Bates, PACHA’s Executive Director, and I co-facilitated the call. Members of our team helping prepare the plan listened to the feedback offered.

Continue reading "PACHA Advises on HHS National HIV/AIDS Strategy Operational Plan" »

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