September Report From SFAN

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This article discusses the September 14 meeting of the South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN). SFAN advises the Ryan White Care (RWC) program of the Florida Department of Health in Broward (FL-DOH Broward). Broward County has a separate RWC program (Broward-RWC).

Josh Rodriguez, RWC-FL DOH Broward, spoke about ADAP’s new 90-day HIV medication dispensing policy. Eligible ADAP clients must meet the following conditions. They have picked up their medications in 11 out of the last 12 months. They had at least one viral load test in the last 24 months. That viral load test showed that they had less than 200 copies of the virus. Ineligible clients can appeal.

Any Eligibility Worker can enroll an eligible client in this program. Once a client enrolls, they will remain enrolled. According to Rodriquez, 214 clients had enrolled in this program as of September 14, 2018.

Open enrollment for the Affordable Care Ace (ACA) will soon begin. Rodriguez said that about 1,400 people will need to re-enroll. An unknown number of new people will have to enroll for the first time.

The current administration has slashed funding for ACA navigators. The navigators help people identify which ACA plan they will need. People new to health insurance find navigators very helpful. The November SFAN meeting will focus on ACA re-enrollment issues.

A great deal about what ACA plans for 2019 remains unknown. Agencies can use this time to verify and update relevant client information. Updating now should streamline re-enrollment.

Rodriguez discussed online recertification in RWC-FL DOH. Clients have to email ADAP to begin online RWC recertification. ADAP will then send them an email about how to proceed. If an RWC client has no computer access, they can recertify online at the Paul Hughes Clinic, 205 NW 6th Ave, Pompano Beach. Clients can also enroll in the ADAP office. About 634 clients have already re-enrolled as of September 14.

Neil Walker, Broward-RWC, reported that the HIV Planning Council would soon have to reallocate funds. In the past, the HIV Planning Council has moved funds from under-performing RWC programs to over-performing programs. Test and Treat and other RWC programs have improved rates of retention in care. As a result more RWC programs are over-performing than are under-performing. Increased use of RWC programs, however, does not increase available RWC funds.

Alisha Hurwood of Broward Legal Aid, reported on the free services that they provide to Broward County residents with incomes less than 300 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). For a single individual, that FPL level would be $36,420 per year.

They provide legal services in discrimination cases. They deal with homeless, tenant, and homeowner legal issues, as well as legal issues surrounding immigration.

Broward Legal Aid administers the RWC HIV Law Project. This project provides services to current RWC clients in Broward with incomes less than 300 percent of the FPL. It provides legal services to help clients access benefits such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid as well as other benefits.

Announcements

October 5: The Enhancing Prevention in Communities (EPIC) Summit 2018 conference will occur at Embassy Suites, 1100 SE 17th Street, from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. This free, interactive event will focus on information about PrEP. For more information, please visit, http://bit.ly/2pqqM7L.

October 17: The Trans Pride planning meeting will occur at the Planet Printer office, 3401 N 29th Ave, Suite 101, Hollywood, form 7 to 9 p.m. Trans Pride will take place as part of Pride Fort Lauderdale on February 24, 2019.

Next SFAN Meeting: Friday, October 12, 2018 at 10:00 a.m., at the Holy Cross Healthplex, 1000 NE 56th Street, Ft. Lauderdale. SFAN welcomes newcomers.


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