Important Happenings in
Week Ending: August 3, 2018
By: Matthew Rose & Sable K. Nelson
Opportunities for Input: Let Your Voice be Heard
Leading up to the US Conference on AIDS (USCA) in September, Act Now: End AIDS is soliciting community input to inform the creation of a federal plan to end the epidemic. It is vital that we hear from affected communities from around the country. There are four primary ways to make your voice heard:
- An online recommendation form at https://survey.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_eWde8Hsj4p0L4UJ. SUBMISSIONS DUE BY AUGUST 10.
- Online webinars covering key recommendation topics ( prevention and testing, care and treatment, structural interventions, research, viral hepatitis, sexually transmitted infections, opioids and the overdose epidemic, data and metrics.
- Web-based meetings and conference calls led by and soliciting input from specific affected communities
- An in person pre-USCA meeting to discuss an early draft of the plan to be held on September 5 in Orlando, FL.
We invite you to use any and all of these options to provide recommendations for the plan. The online form may be used for as many recommendations as you want to submit. While individuals are absolutely invited to submit online recommendation forms, we also encourage submissions from groups.
Research Confirms Targeted HIV Interventions Needed for Older Adults and LatinX Communities
A recent study published by the University of California – Riverside argues that interventions are urgently needed to reach older adults and Hispanics to address HIV testing and beliefs. The study entitled “How age and ethnicity impact HIV testing” looks into the many barriers that prevent people from getting tested for HIV, including lack of knowledge, competing priorities during medical visits, and stigma associated with the test on the part of both the patient and provider.
For more information, READ→
Hospital Cost Transparency
On August 2, 2018, the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) released its annual Inpatient Prospective Payment System rule. The mandate, which takes effect on January 1, is aimed at boosting price transparency and accessibility. Starting in 2019, hospitals will be required to “make public a list of their standard charges via the Internet in a machine readable format, and to update this information at least annually.” Hospitals previously had to make their prices available only upon request. Patient advocate organizations may find this transparency effort somewhat toothless, as CMS had already required hospitals to make their standard charges public. CMS had originally floated the prospect of imposing additional transparency provisions but opted against any immediate action in the final rule.
For more information, READ → http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/400279-new-trump-admin-rule-requires-hospitals-post-prices-online; https://www.beckershospitalreview.com/finance/cms-final-inpatient-payment-rule-for-2019-9-things-to-know.html
Watch: What You Should Know about the New Rule on Short-Term Health Plans
The Trump administration moved to finalize a rule that allows people to purchase health care plans that do not comply with all of the regulations set by the Affordable Care Act. While these plans are typically less expensive than plans sold in the individual market exchanges, they provide less coverage and fewer benefits. Under the Trump administration’s new rule, these plans can now last as long as 12 months — instead of the Obama-era 90-day limit — and be renewed for two additional years. Critics say these changes are part of another swipe at the Affordable Care Act.
For more information, WATCH → https://khn.org/news/watch-what-you-should-know-about-the-new-rule-on-short-term-health-plans/?utm_campaign=KHN%20-%20Weekly%20Edition&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=64960239&_hsenc=p2ANqtz–FZPiSKDT38eqKEcfKVA_JcsKxxpjDbDPFAq3MFZDzMNmmZjgJuVOPrQnZIxsrcX3sGrxwB5n6nWCKyEyeZ3ggAtbWPQ&_hsmi=64960239
What You Can Do
TAKE ACTION: It is very important that our elected officials hear from us to protect federal HIV funding for HIV prevention and care. Speak truth to power by sharing your personal stories with your elected officials. It is vitally important to meet your federal elected officials when they are at home. If we don’t support and advocate for HIV funding and programs, who will? Our movement cannot afford to stand on the sidelines. Your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives need to hear from you.
- Find your U.S. Senators: https://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm
- Find your U.S. Representative: https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative
Also, MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE REGISTERED TO VOTE in time for the primary and general elections happening this year:
For more information, VISIT→ https://www.eac.gov/voters/register-and-vote-in-your-state/
Finally, PARTICIPATE IN THE PRIMARY ELECTION(S) in your state:
For more information, VISIT→ http://www.ncsl.org/research/elections-and-campaigns/2018-state-primary-election-dates.aspx
What NMAC is Doing About It
- NMAC remains vigilant in its advocacy to protect FY19 government funding and the existence of the social safety net.
- NMAC releaseda Biomedical HIV Prevention “Blueprint” entitled Expanding Access to Biomedical HIV Prevention: Tailoring Approaches for Effectively Serving Communities of Color, a new report that establishes strategies to effectively use techniques such as Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) and Treatment as Prevention (TasP) to end the HIV epidemic in communities of color. The full report can be found by visiting nmac.org/blueprint.