HIV/AIDS

  • News Analysis: Conviction Of HIV+ Army Colonel Could Have Larger Implications On HIV Criminalization In US

    Lieutenant Colonel Kenneth Pinkela of the U.S. Army was sentenced to one year in military prison and recommend for dismissal from service on charges of exposing a younger lieutenant to HIV.

  • News Analysis: Suggestions to State Dept. of Health On Improvement in STD Prevention and Care

    On Oct. 17 in Miami, the Florida Department of Health (FLDOH) hosted a statewide meeting for providers and the community, about the health of gay, bi, and other men who have sex with men (MSM). FLDOH wanted to obtain suggestions about the implementation of PrEP and troubling trends.

    Troubling Trends among gay, bi and other MSM in Florida

    New syphilis infections increased in 2014, by 29 percent from the yearly average of the previous three years. Gonorrhea cases rose by 80 percent and chlamydia cases by about 75 percent from 2010 to 2014. These increases occurred most often among gay, bi, and other MSM in their 20s.

    From 2005 to 2014, new HIV infections in Florida increased about 26 percent among gay, bi, and other MSM. At the same time, new HIV infections in Florida decreased among all other adult males. Gay, bi, and other MSM are the key to controlling the HIV epidemic in Florida.

    The Continuum of Care for the HIV Diagnosed identifies points of successful HIV care:

    1. Diagnosis of the HIV infected (HIV testing)
    2. First visit to an HIV care provider (Linkage).
    3. Regular visits to an HIV care provider (Maintenance), and 4) Minimal amounts of active virus in the body (A Suppressed Viral Load). When someone has a suppressed viral load, they will maintain their own health and have minimal risk of infecting others. Among gay, bi, and other MSM, all racial groups show about a 20 percent drop from Linkage to Maintenance in Care. This 20-point drop exceeds all other differences between two adjacent points in the Continuum. Maintaining people in HIV care has become the point of HIV care most in need of improvement to control the epidemic.

    As in most areas of life, racial differences occur in the Continuum of Care among HIV infected gay, bi, and other MSM in Florida. Among Black gay, bi, and other MSM, only 52 percent had achieved viral suppression. Among Latino and White gay, bi, and other MSM, these rates run from 63 percent (Latinos) to 68 percent (Whites). All three racial groups need improvement, but the greatest need for improvement occurs among Black gay, bi, and other MSM.

    Suggestions offered

    FLDOH set up the meeting for maximum idea generation. The meeting had no space for discussing the suggestions and no decision making power. Individuals made the suggestions below as individuals.

    HIV TESTING: The mobile vans should test for syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia as well as HIV.

    PrEP: Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) should be linked with PrEP, as people who need PEP would be good candidates for PrEP. A 24/7 PrEP/PEP hotline could increase uptake of PrEP and PEP. More providers need training in administering PrEP. In order to identify possible gaps in PEP and PrEP care, people have to create and maintain local PEP and PrEP resource inventories of providers, pharmacies, labs etc.

    CONDOMS: People need to develop a consistent dialogue about “bareback” sex and “bareback” porn for the PrEP era. Any condom campaign should be sex-positive and avoid “slut-shaming.”

    INCREASING LINKAGE TO CARE. It would be useful to co-locate testing and care more often. Phone aps used in Africa to increase adherence might be useful here.

    A full report of the feedback will be available by the end of the year.

    To read the full report on “The Epidemiology of HIV among MSM in Florida”, please visit http://bit.ly/1S9KkUh

    For information on financial assistance with co-pays for PrEP or for those without insurance, please visit http://bit.ly/1Yl9Zx4.

    If people want information about Truvada from its manufacturer, Gilead, they can visit Truvada.com and TruvadaPrEPrems.com.

  • News Bites for February 4, 2015

    International, national, and local news...

  • News from South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN), January 10, 2014

    Each month HIV service providers and members of the HIV infected and affected communities meet to exchange information and gain knowledge about HIV at the monthly meeting of the South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN). Below are the highlights of the SFAN meeting on January 10, 2014.

  • News From South Florida AIDS Network, July 25, 2014

    The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) met on July 11. Joey Wynn, SFAN’s chair, announced that changes to the bylaws of the Broward County HIV Health Services Planning Council (see article “Changes to RWC administration in Broward”) threatened to put the Ryan White Care (RWC) Part B contracts out of compliance. In order to bring Broward’s RWC Part B contracts, back into compliance, RWC Part B has to redesign its structure. SFAN’s next meeting (August 1), will begin a half an hour earlier (9:30 a.m.) to include a full presentation of the new structure.

  • News From South Florida AIDS Network, October 1, 2014

    The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) functions as the networking/advisory body for the Ryan White Care (RWC), Part B grant n Broward County. Its monthly meetings are open to the public.

  • News from South Florida AIDS Network: March 2014

    The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) meets monthly. Below are the highlights of the SFAN meeting on March 6, 2014.

    This meeting primarily discussed the administrative rule changes proposed by the Florida State AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP), and the workshops held throughout the state to gather feedback. The Broward workshop happened Feb. 26 at Holy Cross Hospital.

  • Not All HIV Risks are Created Equal

    Executive Director of Latinos Salud talks HIV

  • November Report From SFAN

    The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) is the networking and advisory body for the Florida-Department of Health, Ryan White Care (FL-DOH-RWC) grant in Broward County. Its monthly meetings are open to the public.

  • November Report from SFAN

    This report discusses the monthly meetings of the HIV Planning Council (HIVPC) and the South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN). The HIVPC is the planning body for the Ryan White Care (RWC) Program of Broward County (Broward-RWC). SFAN is the advisory for the RWC program of the Florida Department of Health in Broward (FL-DOH RWC).

  • November Report from the South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN)

    The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) functions as the networking/advisory body for the Ryan White Care (RWC), Part B grant in Broward County. Its monthly meetings are open to the public.

  • Obama on the 35th Anniversary of HIV/AIDS in America

    On June 5, 1981, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published a report on what would later be understood as the first documented cases of AIDS. The past 35 years tell a story that bends from uncertainty, fear, and loss toward resilience, innovation, and hope.

  • October News from the South Florida AIDS Network

    The South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN) functions as the networking/advisory body for the Ryan White Care (RWC), Part B grant in Broward County. Its monthly meetings are open to the public.

  • Officials Fear Ebola's On AIDS Path; Some Disagree

    NEW YORK (AP) - Is Ebola the world's worst infectious disease threat since AIDS?

  • Oktoberfest Wilton Manors

    Oktoberfest is an annual autumn festival that communities celebrate with plenty of beer drinking and merriment. One can say that sounds like any given Friday night, or most nights, here in Wilton Manors. However, this October has been reason to celebrate here in our Island City.

  • Op-Ed: AIDS is a Moral Litmus Test; We Cannot Turn Our Backs On It

    It would seem to be quite strange that after all this time AIDS is still as urgent to me as it always was. Thirty-six million dead later, it still haunts me. I am a fossil with the engraving of the fallen leaves upon me.

  • Op-Ed: HIV Not a ‘Tragic’ Diagnosis Anymore

     This week we commemorate those people that have lost their lives to HIV, and those still living with the disease. 

  • OpEd: Ending AIDS Starts With Us

    Once again, our community commemorates a World AIDS Day.

  • OpEd: HIV - Part of Our Past Still Inflicting Pain on the Present

    As we approach World AIDS Day this weekend, SFGN features our annual SPIRIT issue. I know that discussions of HIV and AIDS are not the most popular features in the world, but my job as publisher is to share truth not fiction, reality not illusion. 

  • Opening Line: August 19, 2015

    Comments by our readers from our online outlets compiled by John McDonald.