Tag Archive for aids in DC

HIV Bills in Washington DC to Pass into Legislation

Legislation

Good news from Washington DC, our close neighbor to the East regarding the new HIV Legislation that is in the city council.

Two bills designed to increase awareness and promote a dialogue on HIV/AIDS between patients and service providers are closer to becoming law after being passed on consent – meaning without any objections – during a first reading of the bills before the full City Council April 17. Insert yeah here!

The bills, introduced by Council-member David Catania (I-At Large), seek to expand HIV/AIDS education in the medical and senior citizen communities in hopes of combating the District’s high HIV/AIDS rates. ”Taken together, these bills will continue to put the District at the forefront of combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic,” Catania said in a prepared statement.

The first bill, the ”HIV/AIDS Continuing Medical Education Act of 2011,” would require any continuing-education requirements for doctors, nurses or physicians assistants include three credits of instruction on HIV/AIDS, covering impact on populations of different ages and racial and ethnic backgrounds. Such training would also teach health providers about the risk of HIV infection, how to discuss HIV/AIDS with patients and how to monitor patients for potential exposure to the disease.

The second bill, the ”Senior HIV/AIDS Education and Outreach Program Establishment of 2012,” would create a peer HIV/AIDS educational outreach program, designed and administered by the Department of Health, for senior audiences. Under such a program, peer educators would make presentations and conduct workshops in places where seniors tend to congregate, including senior centers, nursing and retirement homes and religious centers.

We applaud DC Council for stepping up to combat the high HIV infection rates in the Capitol City. Now you know.
Tom Thayer

info: http://www.metroweekly.com/news/?ak=7280

HIV+ New Guidelines for Couples

couple

The World Health Organization has issued new guidelines for couples in which one partner is HIV+ and the other is not.

The WHO recommends giving antiretroviral treatment to HIV+ partners, even if their immune systems are still healthy. Studies have shown that such treatment can prevent the transmission of HIV to their uninfected partners.

Dr. Bernhard Schwartlander of UNAIDS calls it a new era of hope, more than 30 years into the epidemic. It also allows for better communication. Often HIV+ people are afraid to discuss their status with their uninfected partners. Using treatment as prevention, he said, allows infected partners to regain their dignity.

The World Health Organization guidelines are also being praised by the medical aid group Doctors Without Borders. It calls them a major advance that puts the world on the road to reversing the epidemic.  This is good news to hear.  We here at ARE have numerous clients where one partner is HIV+ and the other is negative so it does work.  HIV+ individuals ‘can’ have relationships. 
Tom Thayer

info:  http://www.voanews.com/english/news/africa/decapua-hiv-discordant-couples-19apr12-148134465.html

AIDS in Washington DC

washington_dc

Recognize this house? If you said the White House in Washington DC where the President resides you are correct.  Right in his backyard is the worst HIV/AIDS Epidemic. 

The HIV rate in the District is 3.2%.

A medical condition is considered an epidemic when it reaches 1%, according to the World Health Organization. In a city of more than 600,000, more than 16,700 people live with HIV/AIDS. Wards 1, 7 and 8, east of the Anacostia River, have the highest incidence rates.

Over the past decade, the number of African-Americans in the city has declined. In the latest census statistics, African-Americans made up a little more than 50% of the population.  But they’re being hit by HIV in large numbers.

Washington DC states it tested a record 122,000 people in 2010. That’s up 12,000 from the year before. A record 5 million male and female condoms also were distributed.

There is a bright spot in all this mess and that is D.C. hasn’t had an HIV-positive baby born in its limits since 2009. Wow, that goes to show you that the medical field has been following proper guidelines on testing pregnant women and getting them into care if HIV+.

HIV/AIDS also was spread due to drug usage and sharing of needles.  The City is doing better but recently the needle exchange program has lost its funding so expect to see a rise of infections again.

 Tom Thayer

info: http://www.wtop.com/?nid=1051&sid=2725007

Magic Johnson Organizing Rappers to Fight HIV Discrimination

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20 years after getting HIV/AIDS, Magic Johnson has been fighting this disease with help from his famous friends over the years.  He now is organizing many famous rappers (names to be released soon) to tackle the issue of homophobia and HIV/AIDS within the Hip-Hop community.

Magic is planning on creating a coalition that will engage rappers to speak out against homophobia and discrimination against gays.  But the main focus of the coalition will be to raise the level of awareness and to break down the stereotypes about HIV/AIDS.

“What we’re trying to do is reach out to the Hip-Hop community because they have power — power with their voice, power with that mic in their hand and power with the lyrics that they sing,” Magic Johnson.

We love how he can use his influence to affect the Nation and applaud his work.

Tom Thayer

info: http://allhiphop.com/2011/12/27/nba-legend-magic-johnson-to-organize-rappers-to-unite-against-homophobia/