Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Holidays from the STI/HIV Prevention Team!

The blog will be on holiday break until the new year. We really appreciate your interest and contribution over the past few months. Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 20, 2013

HIV/AIDS Care and Treatment and Health Care Reform, Assumption 3

By Bob Bongiovanni

So far, we have covered two assumptions (assumption 1, and assumption 2) about people living with HIV or AIDS (PLWH/A) that are being shaken by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Now we move to the last assumption that I will focus on, and the one that Ryan White providers and clients might find the hardest to challenge:

The Ryan White system will continue to operate “as-is” after health care reform is implemented.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

HIV/AIDS Care and Treatment and Health Care Reform, Assumption 2

By Bob Bongiovanni

In Part 1, I talked about an assumption that we need to shake, an assumption that people living with HIV or AIDS(PLWH/A) are shut out of mainstream health care.  Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) , we just can’t assume that is true any more.

Now let’s talk about that second assumption:

that most of the services needed by PLWH/A are not available from Medicaid, Medicare, or commercial health insurance.  

Monday, December 16, 2013

Understanding HIV/AIDS Care and Treatment and Health Care Reform

By Bob Bongiovanni

Back in 2010 when the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law by the president, people started talking about whether this was “good” for people living with HIV or AIDS (PLWH/A). And the basic conclusion was, “yes, it will be good.”  Since 1990, many uninsured, low income PLWH/A have depended on the Ryan White Care Act to get access to HIV care and treatments because there were no other options.  In 2014, many more PLWH/A will have many more options, thanks to the Affordable Care Act.  For nearly four years, people have been working through all the details on the ACA and trying to maximize the benefits for PLWH/A.  And now it is all coming together.

Change is hard.  It is hard for us as individuals, and it is hard for big systems.  The Ryan White system is no exception.  As I have thought about this, and worked to bring about the ACA changes, what I have come to realize is this:

We have built our whole Ryan White system on a set of assumptions, and those assumptions now have to be challenged.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Hepatitis B: Protect Your Baby for Life

By Kathy Gaines

The hepatitis B virus can cause severe liver disease. It is commonly spread from person to person when the blood or other bodily fluid of one person enters the body of another. It is estimated that 350 million people worldwide and 1.2 million people in the United States are infected with hepatitis B. If a pregnant woman is infected with the hepatitis B virus, she can easily pass the virus to her baby at birth.  Babies and young children can also get hepatitis B from contact with family members or others who carry the virus in their blood.

An infant infected with hepatitis B has a 90 percent chance of developing a lifelong, chronic infection and suffering from liver disease. For every 1,000 pregnant women that give birth each year, 1 to 2 of them has hepatitis B.  Worldwide, most people who are infected with hepatitis B are infected at birth or during early childhood. Fortunately, there is a vaccine to prevent babies from getting hepatitis B.

Two steps to protecting your child from hepatitis B: 

Step 1: Get prenatal care that includes testing for the hepatitis B virus. Hepatitis B may not make a woman feel sick, but she could still pass the virus to her baby. If a hepatitis B test detects the virus, the baby needs a hepatitis B vaccine and a hepatitis B immune globulin—a medication that contains antibodies to help strengthen the immune system—at birth. Otherwise, the baby may only receive the vaccine and leave the hospital without complete care.

Step 2: Protect your baby from the virus as early as possible. It is important that newborns get the first dose of the vaccine in the hospital at birth.  At the 1-2 month checkup, the baby will get a second dose.  A third dose at six months will assure long-term protection from the hepatitis B virus.

For more information about hepatitis or the services offered by CDPHE's Hepatitis Program contact Andres.Guerrero@state.co.us .
Thanks for reading!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Obama Administration Shifting $100 Million Into Research for HIV Cure

In his remarks during the White House's World AIDS Day event on Sunday, President Obama addressed the U.S.'s role in the World-wide fight against HIV and AIDS. He announced a $100 million shift in federal research funding for HIV efforts intended to enliven attempts to "eliminate it completely."

The President also announced that the U.S. is planning to contribute up to $5 billion to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria over the next two years by giving $1 of government funding for every $2 raised from private and public efforts. The U.S. is already the largest contributor to the global fight against AIDS with 59 percent of all international government assistance.

See the report on Politico, or check out the President's full remarks here.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Famous Landmarks Turn Red for World AIDS Day

From an article on Daily Mail's MailOnline.com --

"From the White House to the Sydney Opera House, famous landmarks around the world have turned red to honor World AIDS Day.

The global act of solidarity supports people living with HIV/AIDS, remembers those who have passed and raises awareness about prevention, transmission and treatment.

Rio de Janiero's Christ the Redeemer, the banks of the Ganges River in Kolkata and even the Fifth Avenue Apple store in Manhattan were among dozens of sites illuminated in red on December 1."

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