USCA Updates And Black History Month

The USCA Website is Open for Business!

Mark your calendars for the 2018 United States Conference on AIDS (USCA) taking place September 6-9 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in sunny Orlando, FL. For more information, e-mail conferences@nmac.org.

Register Now!
Reserve an Exhibit Booth!
Sponsor the Conference!
Reserve a Program/ Mobile App Ad!
Apply for a Scholarship!

  • USCA General (Both A & B)
  • HIV50+ Strong and Healthy
  • Social Media Fellowship
What’s New at the 2018 USCA? Read more to find out!  

 

Black History Month Webinar Feb. 21

Join NMAC and the Black AIDS Institute for a webinar for Black History Month on Feb. 21 at 3:00 PM EST. We are thrilled to welcome Leisha McKinley-Beach to talk about advocacy and awareness of HIV from Black leadership from the very beginning of the epidemic.This webinar is the first in NMAC’s Community Spotlight webinar series this year to celebrate and spotlight communities that are often invisible or overlooked due to issues of race, gender, or gender identity – and to make sure they and their challenges with HIV are seen and heard.

Space is limited so REGISTER NOW!!!

 

NMAC Briefs the Congressional Black Caucus

by Matthew Rose, NMAC Policy and Advocacy Manger

Yesterday, in the halls of congress, on the heels of the announcement a major budget deal, and on National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, NMAC met with staffers from the offices of the Congressional Black Caucus. With a group of dynamic leaders and community members, NMAC helped to deliver an updated call to action, discussing the current state of affairs with HIV and its role in the black community. The session focused on the lived experiences of individuals and the people they work with who are living at the front lines of this fight with a clear call for some of the more basic needs that can help make a difference, like supportive housing, access to healthcare, and stigma free sex education.

Read more about NNMAC’s Congressional Black Caucus briefing

 

Constituent Spotlight

From time to time, we want to share the inspiring stories of some of the people who are taking leadership roles in the fight against HIV with the help of NMAC. This week, our Communications Director Chip Lewis brings you the story of Teresa Sullivan.

Teresa Sullivan is in a good place in her life. She’s married to a loving and supportive husband, is a devoted grandmother and great-grandmother, and has a dedication to her work as an HIV educator and community activist.

But she didn’t get to this place easily. Teresa overcame numerous personal and health care challenges to get here.

Teresa has been living with HIV for 23 years. At the time of her diagnosis, she was in an abusive relationship.

“He told me no one else would want me because of my HIV status,” said Sullivan. “At the time, I was glad that there was someone I thought would love me unconditionally even though I had HIV.” Read Teresa’s full story here. 

NMAC Connection – A Preview Of Things To Come!

The Summit is Coming to L.A., Dec. 3-4!

The third annual Biomedical HIV Prevention Summit will be held Dec. 3-4  at the JW Marriott Los Angeles in downtown Los Angeles, California. Registration for the Summit is officially open!

NMAC believes biomedical HIV prevention tools like PrEP, PEP, Treatment as Prevention (TasP), and U=U create pathways to ending the epidemic. We are very excited to return to LA. The Summit is partnering with the Los Angeles County Division of HIV and STD Programs. For the first time, we will have a local host committee. Their job is to highlight how Southern California is working to end the epidemic.

For further information about the Summit please visit: www.biomedicalhivsummit.org. NMAC thanks Gilead for recommitting their support of this important meeting.

 

Space is Limited for Our Black History Month Webinar Feb 21!

Join NMAC and the Black AIDS Institute for a webinar for Black History Month on Feb. 21 at 3:00 PM EST. We are thrilled to welcome Leisha McKinley-Beach to talk about advocacy and awareness of HIV from Black leadership from the very beginning of the epidemic.

This webinar is the first in NMAC’s Community Spotlight webinar series (link) to celebrate and spotlight communities that are often invisible or overlooked due to issues of race, gender, or gender identity – and to make sure they and their challenges with HIV are seen and heard. Each month our Spotlight will highlight NMAC’s constituents.  March will focus on Women, April on Youth, May on Asian/Pacific Islanders, June is Pride, October on the Latinx community, and November on Native Americans. Register NOW!

 

Questions About the 2018 Elections? Join Us for a Facebook Live Event for Answers

Join NMAC’s Policy team for a Facebook Live event on Thursday, Feb. 22 at 2:00 PM EST on the 2018 midterm elections. To attend please visit us at facebook.com/NMACCommunity.

The ability to end HIV is real. Science allows us to treat HIV effectively and prevent it with biomedical tools. The life expectancy of people with HIV is almost equal to those not infected with HIV. Unfortunately, that is not the case for communities of color who continue to be disproportionally impacted by HIV. We will never end the epidemic if these health disparities are not addressed.

We need political will and real leadership to scale up access to treatment and biomedical prevention in all communities highly impacted by HIV. As we head into this year’s elections, hear from NMAC’s policy team on how to prepare your agency for this critical midterm election and get some tips on what you can and can’t do as a 501C3.

 

Keep up With NMAC

There’s a lot going on at NMAC. Keep up to date with our online calendar.

NMAC Connection: Be A Part of the USCA Program Team!

Join NMAC’s Constituent Advisory Panels and Make A Difference

Constituent Advisory Panels (CAPs) are a new initiative to better connect with key communities. Based on concerns raised at USCA and the Summit, NMAC is putting together four CAPs to increase our key connections.

The initial tasks of the CAPs will be to advise NMAC on workshops, institutes, plenaries, and scholarship decisions for the 2018 USCA and Summit. While the CAPs will work with all of NMAC, their main priority is our conferences. We are looking for leaders who work collaboratively and play well with others.

For more information and to apply for CAP membership, visit our website.

 

Questions About USCA? Join One of Our Webinars!

The United States Conference on AIDS isn’t until September but there are a lot of important deadlines before then. One of the first is submitting abstracts for consideration. That can be a confusing process, but NMAC is here to help!

Join us on Wednesday, March 7, for our first USCA 2018 webinar “How to Submit an Abstract.”  This free webinar will walk you through the entire submission process and give you a chance to ask any questions you may have. To register for the webinar click here.

NMAC will host additional webinars on USCA 2018, so watch this space for more information on them.

Constituent Spotlight: Queen Hatcher-Johnson

From time to time, we want to share the inspiring stories of some of the people who are taking leadership roles in the fight against HIV with the help of NMAC. This week, our Communications Director Chip Lewis brings you the story of transgender non-conforming leader Queen Hatcher-Johnson.

Living with HIV for more than two decades isn’t keeping Queen Hatcher-Johnson down. She’s now living her best life.
“HIV gave me a new birth with a new purpose to live and not just exist,” said Queen. “My life has changed for the good. I’m more honest and loyal than ever. It has opened my eyes to being healthy and staying healthy and educating others on the importance of being healthy.”

Read more of Queen’s story on our website: here

Keep Up With NMAC

Spring is on its way – and NMAC’s events keep growing. Keep up to date with our online calendar.

CDC’s Seven Banned Words

Nation’s Leading HIV/AIDS Organizations Condemn Efforts to Ban Words at CDC, Erase Transgender and Diversity

Washington, DC — Five of the nation’s leading organizations focused on ending the HIV and STD epidemics in the United States – AIDS United, NASTAD, the National Coalition of STD Directors, NMACand The AIDS Institute – expressed alarm over reports that the Trump Administration barred staff at the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) from using certain words in its FY2019 budget justification to Congress.

While we continue to be in contact with the Administration, CDC, and other agencies regarding these reports, restrictions on these terms, in any manner, demonstrate this Administration’s troubling lack of commitment to science and we are seeking further clarification. Thanks to bipartisan support in Congress and the Executive Branch we have made incredible progress against HIV over the last decade. But budget proposals delineate policy priorities, and in rejecting science and evidence along with other commonly understood health language, this Administration calls into question its commitment to science and the health of all communities, including racial, ethnic, and sexual minorities.

Discouraging use and reference to “evidence-based” or “science-based,” is concerning enough. However, any attempt to remove “transgender” and “diversity” from CDC vocabulary would represent an outright dereliction of the stated duties of the agency. Such efforts are unacceptable and cannot go unanswered. Transgender people and people of color live under constant threat of systemic and specific discrimination and violence. Erasing them from official CDC documents ensures ongoing discrimination and undermines the ability of CDC to effectively respond to their health needs.

Evidence suggests the transgender community is particularly vulnerable to HIV and STDs. As citizens and residents of this nation, they should be treated with fairness and respect. As human beings, they are entitled to dignity and affirming care. AIDS United, NASTAD, NCSD, NMAC, and The AIDS Institute remain committed to ensuring that diversity is celebrated by our public health system and that its work is rooted in science, not politics. We stand with transgender staff, constituents, clients, and family, and will not relent in our demands that their health and the health of all marginalized and minority communities be prioritized by this Administration and the U.S. government.

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AIDS United (AU), NASTAD, the National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), NMAC, and The AIDS Institute (TAI) are national non-partisan, non-profit organizations focused on ending HIV in the U.S. They have been working in partnership to identify and share resources to sustain successes and progress we have made in HIV and STD prevention, care and treatment in the United States. 

NMAC Announces National HIV And PrEP Navigation Landscape Assessment

NMAC Announces National HIV And PrEP Navigation Landscape Assessment

“Ending AIDS must be more than a slogan. It requires real plans, community mobilization, funding, and collaboration between the communities highly impacted by HIV. It is essential that community based organizations, health departments, healthcare providers, researchers, industry, people living with HIV, activists, feds, and people on PrEP have access to critical information about best practices […]

NMAC Announces Aging Mini-Grant Awardees!

 

Today, NMAC is honored to announce the recipients of the 2017 HIV 50+ Strong & Healthy Mini-Grant Program. The mini grant program allows our 2017 USCA HIV 50+ scholars to get involved in their community by developing and implementing a project to educate and engage HIV 50+ community members who need to connect with other peers. The grantees are affiliated with an organization that will act as the fiscal sponsor for the grant. NMAC understands that our movement needs leaders who are living with the virus. Our HIV 50+ scholars have important lessons to share with our HIV community.

Fourteen applications were awarded up to $2,500 in the categories of community education, community outreach, and community engagement.  The grantees and the projects are:

  1. Robert Riester, Aurora CO, “From the Past by Our Future” a storyteller videos project.
  2. Dean Edward, Columbia, SC, “Engage to Lead” a project of engagement of HIV 50 Men.
  3. Nancy Shearer, Santa Monica, CA, “Positive Singles Mixer” a project to empower people living with HIV to expand their social networks, reducing feelings of stigma and isolation.
  4. Michael G. Smith, Santa Fe, NM, “Phoenix Rising 2.0” a project to enhance and encourage financial stability.
  5. Erik Jannke, Palm Spring, CA, “Manual on HIV & Aging” an explanatory manual on HIV & Aging.
  6. Cynthia Marker, Lakeside, CA, “Fellow Advocate Mentorship (FAM)” a project to increase health literacy, self-efficacy, and social support networks among women living with HIV who are 50+.
  7. Randal Lucero, Albuquerque, NM, “50 + Healthy and Strong Summit” a project to bring community leaders, 50 + individuals living with HIV and their allies together to improve the lives of older adults living with HIV.
  8. Lilibeth Gonzalez, New York, NY, “Thriving at 50 and Beyond” a full-day community education event for 50 HIV-positive people aged 50 or older.
  9. Teresa Sullivan, Philadelphia, PA, “Sister to Sister: Women of Color Long Term – Survivors Building Our Voices of Resilience” a project to provide interactive educational sessions, on health and wellness to Women of color over fifty years old and living with HIV and end self- isolation.
  10. Rob Quinn, Boston, MA, ““Healthy Aging with HIV Community Wellness Day” a one-day weekend event targeting holistic health services, resources, and education for PLWH 50+ and Long-Term Survivor.
  11. Bryan Jones, Cleveland, OH, “Building leader for tomorrow among people of color” a project to instill purpose in those over 50 to empower those under 35 who are not engaged in planning bodies or decision-making opportunities.
  12. Jesus Guillen, San Francisco, CA, “The Chronicles of the Phoenix” a project to educate, engage and entertain.
  13. Jennifer Chang, Los Angeles, CA, “Puppy Love” a communal meet-and-greet, and dog-walking event for 50+ survivors of HIV/AIDS who are otherwise socially isolated.
  14. Esther Ross, Greenville, NC,” ‘Leaders Advocating and Mentoring other leaders for Personal growth and Support (LAMPS)” a project to educate persons of Color living with HIV over the age of 50 to mentor, train and support one other peer.

NMAC is very excited to be able to fund these projects and look forward to a fruitful collaboration. Successful projects will be showcased at the 2018 USCA. NMAC wants to thank Gilead for their support of these mini-grants. We can change the world and end the epidemic as we support and build community in the over 50-year-old people living with HIV.

Yours in the Struggle,

Moisés Agosto-Rosario
(202) 836-3669
Director of Treatment

Nation’s HIV Leaders Raise Alarm Over Lack of HIV, STD Mention in HHS Strategic Plan

Nation’s HIV Leaders Raise Alarm Over Lack of HIV, STD Mention in HHS Strategic Plan

Washington, DC – Five of the nation’s leading organizations focused on ending the HIV and STD epidemics in the United States have collectively expressed their grave concern with the lack of focus on HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Strategic Plan, FY2018-2022. Despite the crucial importance of the intersectional issues of HIV and STDs, including hepatitis, to our nation’s public health, the report is relatively silent on these issues.  The document contains no mention of other STDs, mentions HIV only twice and hepatitis just once.

This lack of specificity regarding these diseases is of paramount concern, as is the failure to reference even once, the unique health needs of America’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender populations, who bear the greatest burden of the nation’s HIV and STD epidemics.  The report only barely mentions the health needs and disparities facing racial and ethnic minorities.  At the same time, the Plan seems to prioritize faith-based approaches that have the potential to lead to discrimination against religious and sexual minorities.

In comments submitted to HHS, AIDS United, NASTAD, the National Coalition of STD Directors, NMAC, and The AIDS Institute urged the Trump administration to adjust its approach. At a time when STD rates have increased to their highest levels ever and four out of every 10 people living with HIV are not engaged in care, we should be refocusing our national resources on addressing these challenges, not turning our attention away from them. The HHS Strategic Plan is an opportunity to not only reinforce the national goals and priorities of the United States, but it is an opportunity for the United States to effectively plan to end the HIV epidemic and to address the worsening trends in STDs.  Unfortunately, the latest version fails to accomplish either goal.

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AIDS United (AU), NASTAD, the National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), NMAC, and The AIDS Institute (TAI) are national non-partisan, non-profit organizations focused on ending HIV in the U.S. They have been working in partnership to identify and share resources to sustain successes and progress we have made in HIV and STD prevention, care and treatment in the United States.

Reaction to President’s Opioid Emergency

 AMERICANS DESERVE SUBSTANTIVE ACTION ON OPIOID EPIDEMIC 
STATEMENT ON PUBLIC HEALTH DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY ABOUT THE OPIOID CRISIS

Leading HIV and STD organizations in the United States are both alarmed by the nation’s growing opioid epidemic and determined to do everything in our power to end it. Thus, we have watched with great interest as President Trump has directed his Secretary of Health and Human Services to declare our nation’s growing opioid epidemic a Public Health Emergency. While we agree that there is a need for a coordinated high-level response to the opioid epidemic, we do not believe that the President’s declaration meets that need.

In addition, our organizations strongly oppose efforts under the Public Health Emergency Declaration to redirect funding from HIV/AIDS programs. By ordering a Public Health Emergency Declaration rather than a Declaration of Emergency, the Administration essentially ensured that agencies and organizations would have to rely on funding that has been repurposed rather than making new funds available.

Instead, this Public Health Emergency Declaration should include specific actions designed to address the infectious disease-related aspects of the epidemic –namely, the rising cases of HIV, other STDs, and hepatitis C related to injection drug use. The opioid epidemic is a public health crisis that affects all Americans and all aspects of American life. But because injection drug use can be a means of HIV transmission, addressing it is particularly critical in the fight against HIV, other STDs and hepatitis C. We witnessed the stark consequences of failing to take action in 2015, when injection drug use was the primary factor in the Scott County, Indiana HIV and hepatitis C outbreak, which resulted in more than 200 people becoming infected with HIV and over 400 hepatitis C infections.

Our organizations call on the president to submit an emergency supplemental appropriations request to grant additional funds to local health departments and community-based organizations, which are disproportionately bearing the burden of both the opioid, HIV and hepatitis C epidemics. 

Secondly, additional syringe services programs must be created to simultaneously address overdose deaths and HIV and hepatitis C transmission related to the opioid epidemic. Ninety-three percent of counties vulnerable to HIV infectious outbreaks, as identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, do not have a syringe service program. It is estimated that in 2014 alone, lack of access to syringe services programs lead to the majority of the over 30,500 new hepatitis C infections and over 3,850 new diagnoses of HIV in the United States.

Additionally, we call for additional funding in order to purchase naloxone for police departments, substance use treatment programs, syringe service programs, and other programs that serve injection drug users. There are widespread reports of jurisdictions and programs having to ration naloxone.

Public health officials and criminal justice advocates agree that we must break from traditional approaches that would treat the opioid epidemic solely as a criminal justice issue or an issue of morality. Therefore, wecall upon the Administration to ensure that funds are not used for these responses. We reject any response that may increase incarceration or perpetuate stigma.

Because of its devastating effects on the fight to end the HIV epidemic and on Americans in general, the opioid crisis must be addressed with a public health and harm reduction approach to protect Americans’ lives and their wellbeing.

It is vital that the Trump Administration establish new funding rather than transferring funds that are already being used to address both public health issues effectively. Agency directors within the Trump Administration should utilize the resources and evidence at their disposal to address the opioid crisis to the fullest extent possible. Our organizations stand in solidarity with all working to end the opioid epidemic and believe that taking strong public health approaches will allow Americans to fully address this public health crisis and also bring us closer to ending the HIV epidemic in the United States.

AIDS United (AU), NASTAD, the National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), NMAC, and The AIDS Institute (TAI) are national non-partisan, non-profit organizations focused on ending HIV in the U.S. They have been working in partnership to identify and share resources to sustain successes and progress we have made in HIV and STD prevention, care and treatment in the United States.

One Week Left to Register for the 2017 Biomedical HIV Prevention Summit!

We are less than 2 months away from our 2017 Biomedical HIV Prevention Summit. If this year’s USCA was any indication, we know our movement is eager to come together and continue doing the work to end the epidemic. The Summit will highlight the innovations and achievements in biomedical and behavioral sciences in order to engage our movement about the best practices and lessons learned that will ultimately lead to success. We want you to be a part of this intimate and necessary event. Register by November 3 so you can reserve your place for this year’s Biomedical HIV Prevention Summit. Last year was the first time that NMAC had to cut off registration for one of our conferences due to capacity and we expect to do the same this year! As part of this low registration fee of $275 you will receive access to 4 plenary sessions, participation in over 30 workshops, engagement in an intimate exhibit hall, and receive breakfast and lunch each day.

A central goal of this year’s Summit will improve on the successes of last year’s meeting by broadening the focus from just PrEP to include biomedical prevention options. It’s time to think about the expanded integrated role that PrEP, PEP, and Treatment as Prevention (TasP) has in building pathways to ending the epidemic.  Workshops on building comprehensive HIV plans, PrEP in the South, TasP and the Undetectable = Untransmittable movement are just a few of the topics that will be covered. Check out the Summit program and Listing of Workshops online here.

The Summit is a unique meeting that is very different from USCA.  We are keeping those aspects that worked well during the Summit’s first year.  Plenary sessions will continue to be intimate conversations with the audience and will allow for interactive audience dialogue with the panel presenters at the end of the session.  This year we’ve added a small exhibit hall with seating to facilitate important conversations and information sharing.

Stay tuned for information on the conference app launch. The official Summit hashtag is #2017HIVSummit.
We sincerely thank this year’s Summit sponsors for making the meeting possible.

 

Presenting Sponsor

Benefactor
                       
 Supporter
           
Ally
NMAC Celebrates LGBT History Month

NMAC Celebrates LGBT History Month

I’ve always been a history buff – so much of one that I got my degree in it. So, one of the first things I did when I came out was to learn more about LGBTQ history. And, now, 25 years later, I’m still learning about people, places, and events that are a critical part […]